The SAGE Handbook of Research Methods in Political Science and International Relations offers a comprehensive overview of research processes in social science - from the ideation and design of research projects, through the construction of theoretical arguments, to conceptualization, measurement, and data collection, and quantitative and qualitative empirical analysis - exposited through 65 major new contributions from leading international methodologists. Each chapter surveys, builds upon, and extends the modern state of the art in its area. Following through its six-part organization, undergraduate and graduate students, researchers and practicing academics will be guided through the design, methods, and analysis of issues in Political Science and International Relations: Part One: Formulating Good Research Questions and Designing Good Research Projects; Part Two: Methods of Theoretical Argumentation; Part Three: Conceptualization and Measurement; Part Four: Large-Scale Data Collection and Representation Methods; Part Five: Quantitative-Empirical Methods; Part Six: Qualitative and Mixed Methods.
Chapter 27: Scaling Political Positions from Text: Assumptions, Methods and Pitfalls
Scaling Political Positions from Text: Assumptions, Methods and Pitfalls
Why Do We Want to Scale Texts?
Virtually all instances of political conflict can be thought of in spatial terms. In everyday language as well in academic discourse we use metaphors relating to space when describing politics. Indeed, it is difficult to even talk about politics without ‘using the notions of position, distance, and movement’ (Benoit and Laver, 2006: 12). In politics, the left–right distinction – by definition a spatial notion – may be the most enduring organizing principle (Bobbio, 1996), and the underlying conceptualization of political preferences distributed along different latent dimensions is closely linked to the spatial models of politics often associated with Downs (1957), Smithies (1941) and Hotelling (1990). While ...