Asian Political Methodology Meeting

The following post was contributed by Kentaro Fukumoto of Gakushuin University and Naoko Taniguchi of the Tokyo Institute of Technology.

On January 6 and 7, 2014, the first Asian Political Methodology Meeting was held on the Ookayama campus of the Tokyo Institute of Technology in Tokyo, Japan.

The aim of this meeting is two-fold. First, the conference seeks to promote the advancement of quantitative social science research in Asia. Very few political scientists in Asian countries can read statistical analysis of political data, much less write; far fewer than American political methodologists imagine. By demonstrating how helpful well-considered and designed quantitative analysis is for their understanding of politics, we intended to encourage more Asian political scientists to join the community of political methodology.

Second, the meeting should provide political methodologists with intriguing questions in need of tailor-made methods, new underutilized data, and unknown setups useful for causal inference, all of which are localized in Asia. In the first place, not only political methodology but also statistics in general have been developed by managing to address problems various disciplines raise. If our memory serves us right, at the 25th anniversary roundtable in the annual meeting of the Society for Political Methodology, July 12, 2008, Gary King (Harvard University, the keynote speaker of our conference) also remarked that political methodology should be more internationalized.

In January 2013, Kosuke Imai initiated the idea of annual political methodology meetings in Asia and organized the program committee. We called for papers focusing on quantitative methods and their applications by any researcher around the world. We had 41 applications from 13 nations, of which only 20% (8 of 41) were proposed by scholars in Japan. At the meeting, there were 70 attendees including presenters and audience, among which 26 (37%) participants traveled from outside of Japan. We are happy that the conference was truly international, probably more internationalized than annual meetings of the Society for Political Methodology in the United States.

The quality of presentations and discussions was quite high and most importantly the conference stimulated the minds of many young Asian graduate and undergraduate students. Our hope is that some of these students will pursue the study of political methodology and more generally quantitative political science in the future. The conference also provided great opportunities for networking and socializing among scholars who otherwise would not have opportunities to meet with each other.

We will be holding the second Asian Political Methodology Meeting on January 9 and 10, 2015 in Taipei, Taiwan. We hope to see many of you there.

Papers Presented [full program with downloadable papers]:

The conference program committee was composed of Kentaro Fukumoto (Gakushuin University, Japan, committee chair), Fang-Yi Chiou (Academia Sinica, Taiwan), Kosuke Imai (Princeton University, USA), Xun Pang (Tsinghua University, China), Jong Hee Park (Seoul National University, South Korea) and Naoko Taniguchi (Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan, local host). This conference is jointly sponsored by the Tokyo Institute of Technology and Princeton University Program for the Quantitative and Analytical Political Science, whose administrative and financial assistance we appreciate.

About Justin Esarey

Assistant Professor of Political Science at Rice University.
This entry was posted in Call for Papers / Conference, The Discipline. Bookmark the permalink.

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