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TALK | Colonial Policy, Social Trust, and Economic Resilience: Evidence from Kazakhstan
TALK | Colonial Policy, Social Trust, and Economic Resilience: Evidence from Kazakhstan
WhenThursday, Nov 30, 2017, 12 – 1:30 p.m.
Campus locationGowen Hall (GWN)
Campus room1A (Olson Room)
Event typesLectures/Seminars
Event sponsorsSeveryns Ravenholt Seminar in Comparative Politics, Political Science
Description

UW Political Science PhD candidate Nora Webb Williams will present her paper titled "Colonial Policy, Social Trust, and Economic Resilience: Evidence from Kazakhstan." Professor Susan Whiting will serve as discussant.

Abstract:
What explains why some rural communities are able to weather crises, such as upheaval in state institutions, while other communities disappear? This paper contends that differing levels of social trust, particularly variations in vertical and horizontal trust, have a large impact on rural survival. To test the theory, I examine two neighboring regions (oblasts) in Kazakhstan. Nighttime satellite images of luminosity demonstrate that after the fall of the Soviet Union, some rural communities dimmed more significantly than others. I argue that the differential outcomes are linked to trust patterns that themselves vary as a function of Russian colonial policies towards settlement in the 1800s and early 1900s. The Imperial-era administrative regions had different policies towards land-holding and migration, leading to variation in colonial-era settlement and interaction between population groups. The Imperial border between the regions maps onto today's boundary between Almaty and Jambyl oblasts, allowing for a geographic regression discontinuity. The paper suggests that policy variation towards colonial settlements translates into community-level variation in economic resilience in the 1990s.

Linkwww.polisci.washington.edu…
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