Amy H. Liu

Amy H. Liu
University of Texas at Austin | UT · Department of Government

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42
Publications
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Introduction
Skills and Expertise

Publications

Publications (42)
Article
Full-text available
The literature suggests ethnic diversity has a negative effect on development. Yet, we also know that government policies—e.g., recognizing multiple languages in minority-sizable areas—can attenuate these effects. In this paper, we ask: What are the socioeconomic implications of minority language recognition? We leverage a legal stipulation in Roma...
Article
Full-text available
Following the protests surrounding the George Floyd killing, the University of Texas at Austin Government Department Chair created a diversity taskforce. The taskforce had two purposes: (1) identify the challenges facing the department with respect to diversity and inclusion; and (2) propose recommendations to enhance the study of REP in the depart...
Article
When an institution is not easily accessible—for example, it is geographically far—it can be hard for institutional trust to develop. The institution is not only unavailable, but it can also be seen as inappropriate, non-affordable, unapproachable, and unacceptable. In this paper, we examine whether reducing distance to medical facilities and profe...
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Full-text available
The territoriality principle stipulates that minority communities in a given territory should be linguistically accommodated. What are the economic effects of this principle? In this paper, we argue that the recognition of multiple languages confers respect on the minority group; it allows people to engage and participate meaningfully in society –...
Article
Full-text available
How can the growing personalization of power be identified and measured ex ante ? Extant measures in the authoritarian literature have traditionally focused on institutional constraints and more recently on individual behaviour – such as purging opposition members from (and packing allies into) government bodies. This article offers a different str...
Article
en What explains why some identities in a country become politically salient while others do not? This Special Issue crafts a research design to address two core assumptions in the literature on identity formation in select Asian countries. The first is that the area where ethnic groups reside is exogenously demarcated. Yet, the boundaries to any r...
Article
Censuses ask individuals to identify their own ethnicity. Minorities, however, may be reluctant to self-identify; and thus, censuses may underreport minority populations, raising concerns about measurement validity. We identify and measure the extent of this concern by matching census data on Romas in Romania against a nationwide survey of 2800 mun...
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How can leaders recover public trust and approval when government performance is low? We argue politicians use speeches evoking images of deceased predecessors to reactivate support temporarily. This distracts supporters from the poor performance and arouses empathy and nostalgia among them, causing them to perceive the current leader more favorabl...
Chapter
Language is one of the most important markers of a distinct group identity: It brings members together from the inside, and it demarcates boundaries from the outside. Accordingly, it is a common assumption in the literature on the politics of language—whether it is political science, sociology, linguistics, anthropology, or area studies—that minori...
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Full-text available
What explains public attitudes towards a former aggressor state? Conventional wisdom would suggest the prevalence of negative sentiments rooted in historical hatred. In this article we contend that when individuals are proficient in a foreign language—e.g. a lingua franca—they have an alternative channel through which they are exposed to positive n...
Article
The Chinese are one of the largest migrant groups in Central‐Eastern Europe. While governments have welcomed these newcomers, we do not know whether locals share this sentiment. This is because we have not had the requisite data. In this article, I address this shortcoming. I draw on two oft‐cited explanations in the migration literature to examine...
Article
Given the importance of language for state building, many governments undertake language planning efforts to ensure their citizens can speak an – if not, the – official language. Yet the mere act of designating a language as official is not sufficient for the language to be widely spoken across the population. In this paper we ask, what explains of...
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Full-text available
Process-tracing has grown in popularity among qualitative researchers. However, unlike statistical models and estimators—or even other topics in qualitative methods—process-tracing is largely bereft of guidelines, especially when it comes to teaching. We address this shortcoming by providing a step-by-step checklist for developing a research design...
Article
In this article, we examine how the language spoken in a country can affect individual attitudes about gender equality and subsequently the level of legal rights afforded to women. This is because the feature of a language—specifically whether it requires speakers to make gender distinctions—can perpetuate popular attitudes and beliefs about gender...
Article
In 1999, the Chinese government launched the Great Leap West – an ambitious economic undertaking to develop China's western frontier. The strategy was to use increasing wealth to abate historical ethnic tensions. And while provinces like Xinjiang have experienced impressive growth, relations between the Han-dominated Beijing and the Uyghurs in Xinj...
Article
Eastern Europe has witnessed an influx of Chinese newcomers. Yet this region is often-overlooked by scholars of overseas Chinese. Similarly, the Chinese remain largely absent from European migration studies. In the work that has been done, the Chinese are often depicted as a community that keeps to itself. I examine this claim by highlighting the r...
Article
Conventional wisdom holds that languages, as ethnic markers, build communities with shared preferences and strong social networks. Consequently, ethnolinguistic homogeneity can facilitate growth. This article challenges this conception of language as a cultural marker. It argues that language is also a practical vehicle of communication; people can...
Article
What explains minority language recognition? Why are some governments more responsive than others to minority linguistic demands? While there are reasons to believe democracies – as protectors of civil liberties – are generally more likely to recognize minority demands, I argue only those without a sizable majority extend such recognition to the hi...
Article
Trade has the potential to influence a wide range of political and social outcomes. Using the post-Soviet context, we examine how language policies – vital components for how minorities are treated with far-reaching economic consequences – are influenced by trade. We argue that while ethnic politics and colonial legacies are both important in shapi...
Article
Language Policy and Political Economy: English in a Global Context. Edited by Ricento Thomas . New York: Oxford University Press, 2015. 336p. $74.00. - Volume 14 Issue 3 - Amy H. Liu
Article
What explains the strength of intellectual property rights (IPR)? While extant research would suggest democratic governments are better constrained to protect property rights, we are agnostic about this mechanism with respect to IPR. We argue IPR-distinct from physical property by their lack of geographical boundaries-are stronger in states not bec...
Article
What explains minority language recognition in dictatorships? In this paper, we argue that minority language groups in authoritarian regimes are more likely to have their languages recognized when their interests are represented by a party in the legislature. Moreover, the level of recognition is greater. We test this argument using original group-...
Article
Full-text available
How does ethnic identity affect how an individual evaluates state institutions? Drawing on the US courts and political psychology literatures, we argue politically marginalized groups (e.g., the indigenous in Latin America) are more likely to emphasize the what – are the outcomes satisfactory – but less likely to value the how –are the procedures f...
Article
Objectives What explains (1) the adoption of these inclusive educational policies, and (2) the timing of the passage of these educational policies? The objective of this study is to examine two competing hypotheses: the first has to do with descriptive representation; the second has to do with Native American nations acting as interest groups.Metho...
Book
Languages have deep political significance beyond communication: A common language can strengthen cultural bonds and social trust, or it may exacerbate cultural differences and power imbalances. Language regimes that emerge from political bargains can centralize power by favoring the language of one ethnolinguistic group, share power by recognizing...
Article
Does language choice attract foreign direct investment (FDI), and if so, how? We argue that language—a dynamic instrument for reducing transaction costs—can influence investors' decision to allocate capital. Potential host countries attract investments by coordinating their domestic language policies—especially those in education—to match the langu...
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Full-text available
The passage of (and debate over) immigration laws in Arizona highlights the increasing linguistic diversity of the US. To date, 31 states have passed an English-official bill. In this paper, we test several hypotheses concerning the adoption of such legislation across the states. Using data spanning the past three decades, we present event history...
Article
Linguistic competition occurs when two or more linguistic groups vie against each other for resources from the same state. What are the effects of this competition on education spending? In this paper, we examine two competing explanations. On the one hand, there is the claim that increasing levels of ethno-linguistic diversity can decrease educati...
Article
How does linguistic recognition in the courtroom affect popular confidence in the justice system among minorities? The authors argue (a) the recognition of either a minority language and/or a third-party’s language (lingua franca) during judicial proceedings increases confidence levels but (b) the use of a lingua franca is more effective. This is b...
Article
Why is it that some governments recognize only one language while others espouse multilingualism? Related, why are some governments able to shift language policies, and if there is a shift, what explains the direction? In this article, the authors argue that these choices are the product of coalitional constraints facing the government during criti...
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Full-text available
The discussion of the place of language in politics has generally revolved around its relationship to nation-building and ethnic conflict. Yet, these are not always causally connected nor is language easily given up for the sake of a greater national or individual good. Attitudes regarding language can be influenced by anticolonialist resentments,...
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Arizona's recent passage of Senate Bill 1070 has reignited a national debate over illegal immigration (and immigration more generally), bringing language politics back to the fore. Over the last one-hundred years, states have intermittently introduced and passed legislation declaring English as the exclusive language of government services. However...
Article
What are the linguistic effects of political institutions? Are consensus-building, power-sharing democracies more likely to recognize minority languages? In this article, I argue (1) power-sharing institutions—proportional electoral rules, parliamentary systems, and federalism—are less likely to recognize minority languages than their moderation-in...
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