Outside In: Explorations in the Political Economy of National Security
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In this dissertation, I examine how countries respond to external and internal national security issues in the 21st Century. The first chapter analyzes European military expenditures with an emphasis on how European countries respond to US expenditures at the global and regional levels. Using a dynamic panel model, I find that European countries respond significantly and negatively to US global military expenditures but there is statistical impact at the regional level. The second chapter presents a theoretical model of dissent and political stability, focusing on the interactions of a non-altruistic government and its citizenry. Simulations show how exogenous shocks at the government and individual levels can affect political stability. Findings suggest that countries can be stable in their political instability and that counties with a preference for using government services over suppression are more likely to be politically stable. The third chapter develops a method of estimating a country’s public dissent and political stability using data from social media site Twitter. Tweets voicing dissatisfaction with the government were collected, scored, and aggregated; forming the basis of the measure of public dissent. Combining these estimates of dissent with macroeconomic data creates an overall estimation of a country's political stability.