Information Transmission in Congressional Hearings

Abstract: (Link to draft.) Congressional hearings give legislators a national stage on which to score political points by publicly chastising high-level bureaucrats, and gives lobbyists a forum to demonstrate their access and importance to policymakers. But how well do they serve...

Author: Ian Palmer Cook

Dissertation, Executive, Formal Theory, Information, Legislative   :   October 9, 2015 12:02 AM  :  read more »

Fear of Failure: Career Concerns and Policy Experimentation in the Lab

Abstract: When political agents worry about losing their jobs, they may prioritize job protection over job performance. Experimenting with new, possibly beneficial, policy choices can be squelched because keeping the status quo is proof against firing. Or it can be pursued...

Author: Ian Palmer Cook, University of Pittsburgh; Ian R. Turner, Washington University in St. Louis; Jonathan Woon, University of Pittsburgh

Working Papers   :   July 31, 2014 4:32 PM  :  read more »

Time and Punishment: Concession and Blame in Political Standoffs

Abstract: (Link to draft.) Political negotiation frequently looks like two sides staring each other down, waiting for the other to blink. In these showdowns, neither sides wishes to concede, claiming this would incur voter displeasure. However, this implies a responsiveness to voter...


Ian Palmer Cook, University of Pittsburgh; Jonathan Woon, University of Pittsburgh

Dissertation, Under Review, Working Papers   :   July 30, 2014 4:37 PM  :  read more »

Partisan Presidential Influence over U.S. Federal Budgetary Outcomes: Evidence from a Stochastic Decomposition of Executive Budget Proposals

Abstract: [Link to Journal file.] Can American presidents use their budget proposal authority to achieve their own partisan policy priorities? This is an important, yet challenging, question to answer since formal executive authority is ambiguous, and budgetary powers are shared in...

Author: George A. Krause, University of Pittsburgh; Ian Palmer Cook, University of Pittsburgh

Executive, Published   :   August 30, 2013 8:29 AM  :  read more »   :  

Competing Gridlock Models and Status Quo Policies

Abstract: (Link to Political Analysis.) Spatial theories of lawmaking predict that legislative productivity is increasing in the number of status quo policies that lie outside of the gridlock interval, but be- cause locations of status quo policies are difficult to measure,...

Author: Jonathan Woon, University of Pittsburgh; Ian Palmer Cook, University of Pittsburgh

Formal Theory, Legislative, Published, Simulation   :   May 23, 2013 9:05 PM  :  read more »

Dog Whistling

Abstract: (Link to draft.) News and media commentators frequently accuse political candidates of using "dog whistles": words and phrases that have secondary, usually nefarious meanings. Whistling targets attuned subsets of a population, attempting to convey information the remainder of the audience...


Ian Palmer Cook, University of Pittsburgh

Dissertation, Formal Theory, Voting   :   May 23, 2013 9:02 PM  :  read more »

Buying Legislators or Buying Judges? The Impact of Campaign Contributions on State Judicial and Legislative Elections

Abstract: Anyone running for an elected office knows the importance of campaign contributions- a resource that can potentially be translated into votes (Mayhew 1974). A great deal of research on contributions in elections at both the state and federal levels has...

Author: Kristen Coopie Allen, University of Pittsburgh; Ian Palmer Cook, University of Pittsburgh

Judicial, Voting, Working Papers   :   September 5, 2012 10:48 AM  :  read more »   :  

Analysis and Recommendations on the Company-Grade Officer Shortfall in the Reserve Components of the U.S. Army

Abstract: Read the paper here. The U.S. Army National Guard (ARNG) and the U.S. Army Reserve (USAR) both have lower-than-authorized inventories of company-grade officers. Army Reserve Components (RCs) have higher-than-authorized inventories of lieutenants but lower-than-authorized inventories of captains. This monograph addresses...

Published, RAND   :   June 15, 2012 1:17 PM  :  read more »

A Methodology for Comparing Costs and Benefits of Management Alternatives for F-22 Sustainment

Abstract: Read the article here. The U.S. Air Force asked RAND Project AIR FORCE to perform a congressionally required assessment of contractor versus organic sustainment strategies to determine the most cost-effective approach for the F-22 air vehicle and F119 engine sustainment....

Published, RAND   :   June 15, 2012 1:07 PM  :  read more »

The Day After: When Electronic Voting Machines Fail

Abstract: In any democracy, delivering on the promise that every vote should count depends fundamentally on the ability to count votes accurately....

Author: Ian Palmer Cook

Published, RAND, Voting   :   June 15, 2012 12:18 PM  :  read more »

About the Author

Ian P. Cook is a Ph.D. student at the University of Pittsburgh, studying American Politics. He has also been a researcher with the RAND Corporation. No material on this site implies endorsement by either institution.