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When the Smoke Clears

Published by USC Bedrosian Center on

Governance Salon featuring Charles Shipan, University of Michigan

In federal systems, governments have the opportunity to learn from the policy experiments (and the potential successes) of other governments. Whether they seize such opportunities, however, may depend on the expertise or past experience of policymakers. Based on an analysis of a dataset on state-level adoptions of youth access antismoking adoptions, we find that states are more likely to emulate other states that have demonstrated the ability to successfully limit youth smoking. In addition, we find that political expertise (as captured by legislative professionalism) and policy expertise (as captured by previous youth access policy experiments at the local level) enhance the likelihood of emulating policy success found in other states.

Chuck Shipan is the Ira J. and Nicki Harris Professor of Social Science at the University of Michigan. Prior to joining the faculty at Michigan, Shipan served on the faculty at the University of Iowa and held positions as a research fellow at The Brookings Institute, a Robert Wood Johnson Scholar at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health, and a Visiting Research Fellow at Trinity College in Dublin. His most recent book, Deliberate Discretion? The Institutional Foundations of Bureaucratic Autonomy (co-authored with John D. Huber), received the Richard F. Fenno Prize, the William Riker Award, and the Gregory Luebbert Award from the American Political Science Association. Shipan is also the author of Designing Judicial Review: Interest Groups, Congress, and Communications Policy and has written numerous articles and book chapters on political institutions and public policy. He is currently engaged in a large-scale study of the diffusion of antismoking laws in US states and cities and an examination of why some public policies have longer lives than others. Shipan received a B.A. in chemistry from Carleton College and a M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from Stanford University.

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