ASRF Working Papers Series
The Working Papers series is intended to reflect the diverse range of interdisciplinary research interests of staff in the College of Social Sciences at the University of Glasgow.
By publishing papers as works in progress, it aims to encourage and promote the interdisciplinary research work of members of the College, and to provide a forum in which to share innovative ideas and approaches on interdisciplinary topics, and elicit feedback from peers before submitting to more formal refereed peer review in the form of conference papers or journal articles.
To this end, the author’s contact details for correspondence are normally provided at the end of each paper.
Submissions: Papers authored by one or more members of College staff can be submitted to the ASRF via email, to be considered for publication. Texts should normally be no longer than 8,000 words, and should be submitted in a Microsoft Word-compatible (.doc or .rtf) file format. Authors are advised to keep in mind the generalist audience of the Working Papers series and avoid technical language and extensive footnotes as much as possible.
Currently Available Papers
Situating Care in Health Economics
Working Paper 2013:02
Authors: John Davis and Robert McMaster
Standard health economics concentrates on the provision of care by medical professionals. Yet ‘care’ receives scant analysis; it is portrayed as a spillover effect or externality in the form of interdependent utility functions. This conceptualisation is subject to considerable problems, stemming from its reliance on a reductionist social model that centres on instrumental rationality and consequentialism with its subsequent disregard for the deontological (moral rules and duties) and compassionate aspects of behaviour. Care as an externality is a second-order concern relative to self-interested utility maximization, and is crowded out by the parameters of the standard model. We explore an alternative approach to conceptualising care based on the social embeddedness of the individual that emphasises the deontological properties of care.
International Political and Legal Implications of Scottish Independence
Working Paper 2013:01
Authors: David Scheffer
Professor David Scheffer is Mayer Brown/Robert A. Helman Professor of Law and Director, Center for International Human Rights, Northwestern University School of Law, Chicago, Illinois. An earlier version of this paper, which sets out the author's views on some of the implications if Scotland were to leave the United Kingdom and become an independent sovereign state, was delivered by the author at the University of Glasgow, on 22 January 2013 in its Security and an Independent Scotland lecture series.
Implications of Rising Flood Risk for Residential Real Estate Prices and the Location of Employment
A GMM Spatial Model with Agglomeration and Endogenous House Price Effects
Working Paper 2012:01
Authors: Yu Chen, Bernie Fingleton, Gwilym Pryce, Albert Chen and Slobodan Djordjević
While there is a relatively small literature on the impact of flood events on employment at regional and national level, the effect of flood risk on employment density at the local level, and the link to housing prices are largely neglected. This paper attempts to fill these gaps and extend the literature in four ways. First, we argue that competition for land between firms and households will generate a potentially endogenous role for house prices, which we estimate using a GMM two-stage least squares spatial econometric model. Second, we model interaction effects between agglomeration and flood risk using a gravity-based measure of agglomeration. Third, our models utilise a high-resolution flood risk measure which incorporates both flood frequency and severity. Fourth, we use a high-resolution measure of employment to capture local effects of flood risk.
Housing and Governance
Why regulatory reform is part of the problem and part of the solution
Working Paper 2011:06
Author: Josef Konvitz (Honorary Professor of Education, School of Education, University of Glasgow)
The “regulatory governance gap” in housing policy has widened glaringly since 2007. This matters all the more because governments are far more reliant on the regulatory lever now that their room for manoeuver to use fiscal and monetary instruments is severely constrained. A wholesale review of housing policies, from credit and banking to building codes and permits was overdue in the run-up to the crisis. But the crisis has made the prospects for serious reform even less likely. Proposals for specific macro- and micro-economic reforms are advanced earnestly by people in government, the private sector and the academy in pursuit of recovery. These however are not backed up by proposals for effective evidence-based regulatory design and implementation. Regulatory reform in housing must address three challenges: risk management, cross-sectoral coordination, and multi-level coherence.
Security Council Legislation, Article 2(7) of the UN Charter and the Principle of Subsidiarity
Working Paper 2011:05
Author: Nicholas Tsagourias (Professor of International Law and Security, School of Law, University of Glasgow)
This article considers the relationship between the United Nations and its Member States in view of the recent assertion of legislative powers by the Security Council. It claims that the exponential growth in UN powers at the expense of the powers of its Member States cannot be arrested by legal means, because of the nature of the UN system and the absence of legally enforceable criteria or compulsory dispute settlement mechanisms. For this reason, it proposes a different approach to law-making in the area of international peace and security; one which is built around the principle of subsidiarity, as reflected in Article 2(7) of the UN Charter. The role of the principle of subsidiarity in this respect is to determine which authority is best suited to exercise legislative power in peace and security, and how such power should be exercised, in order to attain peace and security more efficiently. It is thus contended that the principle of subsidiarity promotes cooperative relations between the UN and its Member States by protecting the latter’s jurisdictional authority from unnecessary interference.
Rediscovering Adam Smith
How The Theory of Moral Sentiments can explain emerging evidence in experimental economics
Working Paper 2011:04
Author: Douglas E. Stevens (Florida State University)
Emerging evidence in experimental economics has been difficult to explain using traditional economic theory. In particular, experimental tests of economic theory have provided evidence consistent with the existence of internalized social norms such as reciprocity, fairness, and honesty. Even in single period settings where traditional economic predictions are most likely to hold, participants frequently exhibit “repeated play behavior” and achieve cooperative solutions that surpass game theoretic predictions based on narrow self-interest. I discuss how the moral theory in Adam Smith’s first book, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, can explain this evidence. I begin by reviewing the historical context behind Adam Smith and the Scottish Enlightenment. Next, I present the moral theory in The Theory of Moral Sentiments within this historical context. Next, I present the emerging evidence in experimental economics that has been difficult to explain using traditional economic theory. Finally, I discuss how The Theory of Moral Sentiments can be used to explain this emerging evidence.
Humanitarian Uses of Force
Working Paper 2011:03
Author: Christian J. Tams (Professor of International Law, School of Law, University of Glasgow)
This paper considers the current legal standing, shaped by the UN Charter, for humanitarian uses of force to protect the rights of others. Any normative system seeking to address the question of whether force can be used has to strike a balance between two considerations: (i) the desire to restrict the availability of force, and (ii) the interest in seeing human rights effectively protected. How this balance is struck depends on the relative importance accorded to each, as well as on the modalities of the use of force. The UN Charter has set the parameters by prohibiting the use of military force in the international relations between States and by explicitly recognizing two relevant exceptions – the inherent right to self-defence and military enforcement mandated by the Security Council. What is uncertain is whether these express rules, or possible unwritten rules that have evolved alongside them, accommodate humanitarian concerns, or ought to do so. This question has prompted much debate, notably under the rubric of ‘humanitarian intervention’. The subsequent considerations reflect on these debates, but adopt a broader approach that includes other humanitarian uses of force – resort to military violence with a view to protecting human rights of others – as well, notably UN-mandated interventions, armed struggles against colonialism and military operations to rescue nationals from abroad. It is hoped that this broader focus will enable us to avoid the “tunnel vision” besetting entrenched contemporary debates about humanitarian intervention, and to appreciate the dynamic evolution of the Charter regime.
Flood Risk, Climate Change and Housing Economics
The four fallacies of extrapolation
Working Paper 2011:02
Authors: Yu Chen, Gwilym Price and Danny Mackay (University of Glasgow)
This paper argues that major gaps exist in the research and policy understanding of the intersection of flood risk, climate change and housing markets. When extrapolating the research on historical flooding to the effects of future floods—the frequency and severity of which are likely to be affected by global warming—housing economists must be careful to avoid a number of methodological fallacies: (a) The Fallacy of Replication, (b) The Fallacy of Composition, (c) The Fallacy of Linear Scaling, and (d) The Fallacy of Isolated Impacts. We argue that, once these are taken into account, the potential magnitude and complexity of future flood impacts on house prices could be considerably greater than existing research might suggest. A step change is needed in theory and methods if housing economists are to make plausible connections with long-term climate projections.
The Great Contraction
Implications for Cities and Universities
Working Paper 2011:01
Author: Josef Konvitz (OECD and Honorary Professor, School of Education, University of Glasgow)
Paper first given at a People, Places, Engagement and Change Research Cluster Seminar, Adam Smith Research Foundation, University of Glasgow, 5 November 2010.