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The Structure of Policy Change$
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Derek A. Epp

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780226529691

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226529868.001.0001

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Distributional Assessments of Institutional Response

Distributional Assessments of Institutional Response

(p.46) Four Distributional Assessments of Institutional Response
The Structure of Policy Change

Derek A. Epp

University of Chicago Press

This chapter introduces readers to stochastic process methods; statistical techniques that analysts can use to make sense of complex interactive systems, such as government agendas. The chapter pays particular attention to distribution analysis, explaining how different types of information processing have implications for the distribution of changes in public policies. Institutions that process information disproportionately should produce leptokurtic policy change distributions; that is, distributions that have high central peaks and very wide tails. Institutions that process information more completely should produce normally distributed policy change distributions. The chapter demonstrates the empirical link between information processing and distributions of policy change through a series of simple simulations.

Keywords:   stochastic process methods, leptokurtic, distributional analysis

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