Current Editors bio photo

Current Editors

Cristina Bodea
Andrew Kerner
Shahryar Minhas
Ha Eun Choi

Welcome to the data profiles page of the APSA Political Economy Section website! This page collects and publishes some of the new political economy datasets that are being created within the discipline. Our goal is to help authors publicize new work, and to inform other researchers of newly available data and how they might be used in their own research.

Datasets are presented here alongside links to the relevant original papers, and with a short author-written piece introducing the dataset and some of its possible uses.

If you are interested in having your own dataset profiled please email Ha Eun Choi at choiha3 [at] msu [dot] edu or any of the other editors listed on the left side of the page.

  • Constitutional balanced-budget provisions – Joe Amick, Terrence Chapman and Zachary Elkins (2020). On Constitutionalizing a Balanced Budget. The Journal of Politics.
    • Do constitutional rules that mandate a balanced budget promote fiscal discipline? Although such rules are at the heart of austerity debates across the world, we know surprisingly little about their consequences. We leverage original data on constitutional budget provisions and analyze their effect on governments’ primary budget balances. We find that constitutional rules that require balanced budgets are robustly associated with fiscal discipline. The constitutional effect remains even after controlling for statutory balanced-budget rules. Furthermore, the effect strengthens as constitutions become more difficult to amend and under conditions of borderline solvency—two implications consistent with a constitutional impact. The results will be surprising to those who appreciate both the strong pressures against fiscal discipline and the creativity of governments in devising strategies to evade spending limits. These findings provide a reference point for policy debates surrounding financial crises in many national contexts.


  • Coalitions on Climate Change –Jared Cory, Michael Lerner and Iain Osgood (2021). Supply Chain Linkages and the Extended Carbon Coalition. American Journal of Political Science.
    • Which firms oppose action to fight climate change? Networks of input sourcing and sales to downstream customers ought to propagate and reinforce opposition to decarbonization beyond direct emitters of CO2. To test this claim, we build the largest data set of public political activity for and against climate action in the United States, revealing that the majority of corporate opposition to climate action comes from outside the highest-emitting industries. We construct new measures of the carbon intensity of firms and show that policy exposure via carbon-intensive inputs and sales to downstream emitters explains this large volume of opposition from non-emitting industries. Sixty-six percent of U.S. lobbying on climate policy has been conducted by an extended coalition of firms, associations, and other groups that have publicly opposed reducing carbon emissions. Public opposition to climate action by carbon-connected industries is therefore broad-based, highly organized, and matched with extensive lobbying.


  • The Tax Introduction Database –Philipp Genschel and Laura Seelkopf (2021). The rise of modern taxation: A new comprehensive dataset of tax introductions worldwide (with Moritz Bubek, Edgars Eihmanis, Joseph Ganderson, Julian Limberg, Youssef Mnaili and Paula Zuluaga). The Review of International Organizations.
    • This article describes the new Tax Introduction Dataset (TID). Listing the year and the mode of the first permanent introduction of six major taxes (inheritance tax, personal income tax, corporate income tax, social security contributions, general sales tax and value added tax) in 220 countries, 1750–2018, TID is the most comprehensive dataset of its kind. The comprehensiveness of our measure is of critical value to empirical work on the causes of tax innovation and its consequences for state, society and economy. In this paper, we explain the selection of our tax sample and the structure of the dataset, descriptively map temporal and regional patterns of tax introductions around the world, and draw on TID to investigate associations between tax introductions and economic development, war, and democratization.


  • IGOs Membership Patterns –Christina Davis and Tyler Pratt (2021). The forces of attraction: How security interests shape membership in economic institutions. The Review of International Organizations.
    • The link between security and economic exchange is widely recognized. But when and how much do geopolitical interests matter for economic cooperation? While existing work focuses on bilateral trade and aid, we examine how geopolitics shapes membership in multilateral economic organizations. We demonstrate that substantial discrimination occurs as states welcome or exclude states based on foreign policy similarity. Biased selection of members can politicize economic cooperation despite multilateral norms of non-discrimination. We test the geopolitical origins of institutional membership by analyzing new data on membership patterns for 231 economic organizations from 1949 – 2014. Evidence shows that security ties shape which states join and remain in organizations at both the formation and enlargement stages. We use a finite mixture model to compare the relative power of economic and geopolitical considerations, finding that geopolitical alignment accounts for nearly half of the membership decisions in economic institutions.


  • Sovereign defaults in domestic-law debt – Aitor Erce, Enrico Mallucci, and Mattia Picarelli (2020). A Journey in the History of Sovereign Defaults on Domestic-Law Public Debt. Working Paper.
    • We introduce a novel database on sovereign defaults that involve public debt instruments governed by domestic law. By systematically reviewing a large number of sources, we identify 132 default and restructuring events of domestic debt instruments, in 50 countries from 1980 to 2018. Domestic-law defaults are a global phenomenon. Over time, they have become larger and more frequent than foreign-law defaults. Domestic-law debt restructurings are achieved faster than foreign ones, often through extensions of maturities and amendments to the coupon structure. While face value reductions are rare, net-present-value losses for creditors are still large. Unilateral amendments and post-default restructuring are the norm, but negotiated pre-default restructurings are becoming increasingly frequent. Finally, we document that domestic defaults are widely heterogeneous and we complement our analysis with a collection of documents, named “sovereign histories”, that provide the fine details about each default episode.


  • Parliamentary adoption of and debates over EU oversight institutions – Federica Genovese and Gerald Schneider (2020). Smoke with fire: Financial crises and the demand for parliamentary oversight in the European Union. The Review of International Organizations.
    • The handling of the 2008 financial crisis has reinforced the conviction that the European Union (EU) is undemocratic and that member states are forced to delegate overwhelming power to a supranational technocracy. However, European countries have engaged with this alleged power drift differently, with only a few member states demanding more parliamentary scrutiny of EU institutions. This article develops a political economy explanation for why only some states have enforced mechanisms to monitor the EU more closely. Our theory focuses on the role of the crisis and the impact of fiscal autonomy in countries outside and inside currency arrangements such as the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). We argue that, in the aftermath of a severe economic shock, member states outside the EMU possess more monetary and fiscal resources to handle the crisis. These would then demand oversight of EU decision-making if their fiscal sustainability depends on the Union. By contrast, Eurozone states that need policy changes cannot address the crisis independently or initiate reforms to scrutinize the EU. Hence, we argue that during the heated moments of severe economic downturns, parliaments in Eurozone countries discuss supranational supervision rarely. As these legislatures have nevertheless to give in to the popular demand for EU control, they express support for more EU supervision in the infrequent times of debate. We provide evidence for our theory with a cross-national analysis of EU oversight institutions, and a new original dataset of parliamentary debates during the Eurozone crisis. Our findings highlight the political consequences that financial nosedives have across the diverse membership of a supranational organization.