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IPPSR is MSU’s new hub for public policy information and research. Search our summaries of scientific research with implications for public policy by inputting keywords in the search box or selecting options from the menus below.


Policy Research

Your Account Balance is Due—Pay Up or Get Out: Streamlining the Eviction Process in Michigan

Mary Jo Weindorf

January 2010

This article explains the eviction process in Michigan and argues that it should be changed to become more “pro-landlord”. It claims that tenants are favored in both the statute and application of the legal process, as the burden of filing for eviction and going through the court process is placed on the landlord. Thus, the article suggests that the process should become more favorable towards landlords by increasing the speed of the process and creating a government agency to act as a middleman between the tenant and landlord. This, the article argues, will alleviate problems in the housing and rental market as landlords will feel more secure in their rights and will, therefore, be more likely to invest in new properties as well as invite new landlords into the market.

Does Non-Quota Strategy Matter? A Comparative Study on Candidate Selection and Women’s Representation at the Local Level in Germany

Florian Ruf

August 2019

This study analyzed the effectiveness of various strategies German political parties used in local elections to achieve women’s representation on the ballot. The study focused mainly on strategies other than gender quotas, as non-quota methods have been studied less in this field. The study found that non-quota methods (such as establishing women’s sections within the party, mentoring programs, and party targets to increase equality) do, in fact, increase the likelihood of women being nominated on party tickets. It also found that female representation is better when party gatekeepers are women.

Energy efficiency and consumption — the rebound effect — a survey

June 2000

This article argues that when energy consumption becomes more efficient due to improved technology, it will reduce the per-unit price of energy. This will in turn, raise the consumption of energy services, offsetting the efficiency. However, the conclusions of the study where inconclusive and the micro level of this study, and not much research has been done on the macro implications of this argument.

Homeless in God’s Country: Coping Strategies and Felt Experiences of the Rural Homeless

Timothy Hilton, Cornell DeJong

November 2010

This ethnography examines the lived experiences of homeless people in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula (UP). It finds five distinct categories of coping behaviors (how they search for basic necessities) in the UP: shelter users; campers (those living outdoors or in cars); couch surfers (those temporarily staying with friends and family); mixed users; and circumstantial homeless (“atypical” homeless experiences). Across these categories, however, the participants’ experiences are extremely diverse in their coping behaviors, especially in terms of the use of government agencies and social services.

Conserving Energy and Preserving the Environment: The Role of Public Transportation

Robert J. Shapiro, Kevin A. Hassett , Frank S. Arnold

July 2002

Americans use an immense amount of energy for transportation, even more than what’s used for the production of goods. In order to change dependence on non-renewable resources, Americans will need to change the way they travel, and public transportation is a very energy efficient option. This paper illustrates how traveling by public transit per person and per mile, creates less pollution and uses less energy than travel by private vehicle.

Community-Supported Agriculture: A sustainable alternative to industrial agriculture?

Cynthia Abbott Cone, Andrea Myhre

June 2000

CSA stands for community-supported agriculture and it creates a relationship between small farmers and those who buy memberships and receive locally produced and fresh produce. It is a way for the community to buy directly from these farmers and share some of the risk of up-front costs associated with farming. This article collects data from eight CSA farms for five years and examined the perceptions of these farms, motivations for memberships, and how women play a role. They found that many farmers found the work rewarding as they got to care for their community and build a relationship with those buying their crops.

Voting May Be Habit-Forming: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment

Alan S. Gerber, Donald P. Green, Ron Shachar

July 2003

This report is arguing that voting is habit forming, which creates a dynamic piece to understanding political participation that has been previously static. Keeping all other attributes constant of an individual and their environment, showing up at the polls will increase a person’s likelihood of returning. Before simply accepting habit as a fact, non-experimental results had to be combined with experimental data. 25,000 subjects were randomly assigned conditions where they were urged to vote in different ways, direct mail or face-to-face canvassing, and voting behaviors were tracked in the 1998 and 1999 November elections. Both tactics had significant effects on turnout. In the end, this report found that voting in the prior 1998 election increased probability by 46.7 percentage points for the next. The more you participate, the more you feel you are doing something meaningful, and the more likely you are to attend the polls. The article points out four hypotheses on the explanations for persistence in voting behavior. The easiest to test is the first hypothesis. This is that the political environment itself reinforces a person’s political participation level. The second is voting alters specific broad psychological orientations that are known to have an impact on voter turnout. The third is going to the polls changes the positive or negative feelings people have toward voting itself. The final hypothesis is that civic participation alters the way that people look at themselves overtime.

Self-efficacy intervention, job attitudes, and turnover: A field experiment with employees in role transition

D. Brian McNatt , Timothy A. Judge

November 2008

This study looks at an experiment of college graduates working for the same accounting firm, comparing the results of the effectiveness of self-efficacy intervention on new hires to those being promoted to greater leadership positions in their second year. Only a weak relationship was found when looking at the results of new hires for both job attitudes and turnover, while the second-year employees who were given the intervention showed improvement in job attitudes and retention. Interviews and written communications were used to track the effects of efficacy intervention as well as survey responses to track attitudes. However, the sample size of this study was relatively small and not all transition factors were taken into account. It cannot be confirmed that self-efficacy was the thing which has improved as a result of interventions compelling individuals not to quit.

Personality and Gendered Selection Processes in the Political Pipeline

Adam M. Dynes, Hans J. G. Hassell, Matthew R. Miles, Jessica Robinson

September 2019

This study analyzes the different personality types of men and women involved in politics, by looking at candidates and officeholders in municipal elections. The study found that, across personality types, women are less likely to seek elected office than men are; and that the gap between men and women is consistent across personality types. However, female officeholders are slightly more extraverted and much more conscientious than males. Despite the fact that there is no difference across the population at large, or even those seeking office. This suggests that the “political pipeline” values different traits for men and women when it comes to campaigns and elections.

Bringing Party Ideology Back In: Do Left-Wing Parties Enhance the Share of Women MPs?

Andrés Santana , Susana Aguilar

October 2018

This article examines how political parties affect the level of women’s representation in government, by looking at the share of women elected as regional members of parliament in Spain. The article states that political parties are gatekeepers of elected office in parliamentary systems. Therefore, gender parity can only be reached if the parties are on board. Left-wing (socialist and communist) parties tend to be thought of as those that value gender parity the most, but this study tests the truth of that. The study found that left-wing parties are better at increasing the share of women in parliament and electing new women, but that right-wing parties are actually better at retaining women in parliament once they are elected.