Saturday, June 7, 2008

My thesis topic has been approved!

Do informed voters hold different views on foreign policy than less well informed voters?

Research Questions:

In the population of all Americans, is there a difference between the foreign policy
views of informed voters and less well informed voters? What is the relationship between political IQ and foreign policy preference?

Research design:

I will survey a minimum of 25 subjects asking them questions from a political IQ test consisting of objective questions related to civic and political knowledge (i.e. How many justice sit on the supreme court? ect). I will then examine the results to see if there is a relationship between the subject’s political IQ and the subject’s answers to foreign policy questions.


H1: There will be no correlation, indicating that America policy preference towards foreign policy is independent of their political IQ.

H2: There will be a correlation between a person’s political IQ and their answers to the foreign policy preference questions.

Section 1
I will begin by reviewing the literature about and establishing the parameters for the Enlightened Policy Preference model. I will then construct a political IQ test using questions from both political IQ test examples from the literature and questions from the American Civic Literacy Quiz. I will then construct a foreign policy opinion test with one section made up of broad questions on globalization and one section made up of more questions about policy preference regarding specific questions of U.S. foreign policy. The globalization questions will focus on attitudes towards the “4 flows” of globalization: Money, Energy, Security and People. The more specific questions on U.S. foreign policy preference will be based on current controversies from major media sources which could include major newspapers and national polling organizations.

Section 2:
I will analyze the results of the survey.

Section 3: I will attempt to place the results of the survey and the answers to the research questions in the context of American grand strategy for the 21st century. What do the results portend for building a sustainable foreign policy for the 21st century? Should we make civic and geo-political education part of any public diplomacy campaign?