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Malcolm Fairbrother - Research

Reader in Global Policy and Politics
School of Geographical Sciences
University of Bristol

Selected Current Projects

In collaboration with researchers in Sweden and Canada, I am engaged in a project on Three Worlds of Trust: A Longitudinal Study of Welfare States, Life-Course Risks, and Social Trust, funded by Sweden's Riksbankens Jubileumsfond. We are seeking to understand how major life events may undermine or foster social trust, and how they may do so differently in different social contexts.

I am also writing a book (under contract) on the political origins of economic globalization since the 1980s, focussing on the cases of Canada, Mexico, and the United States. The book asks whether the rise of globalization has been largely a function of political democracy and reflects public opinion (as a large liberal literature suggests), or rather reflects the circumvention of democracy and the preferences and worldviews of elites. I show that the latter critical view is broadly correct, but not for the reasons that extant critical accounts suggest.

Selected Publications

"When Will People Pay to Pollute? Environmental Taxes, Political Trust, and Experimental Evidence from Britain," 2017, forthcoming in British Journal of Political Science

"Environmental Attitudes and the Politics of Distrust," 2017, forthcoming in Sociology Compass

"Geoengineering, Moral Hazard, and Trust in Climate Science: Evidence from a Survey Experiment in Britain," 2016, Climatic Change (pre-publication version)

"Trust and Public Support for Environmental Protection in Diverse National Contexts," 2016, Sociological Science (open access)

"Externalities: Why Environmental Sociology Should Bring Them In," 2016, Environmental Sociology (open access)

"Pollution Prophylaxis? Social Capital and Environmental Inequality," 2016, Social Science Quarterly (with Kerry Ard)

"The Random Effects in Multilevel Models: Getting Them Wrong and Getting Them Right," 2016, European Sociological Review (with Alexander Schmidt-Catran)

"Economists, Capitalists, and the Making of Globalization: North American Free Trade in Comparative-Historical Perspective," 2014, American Journal of Sociology
*winner of best article awards for 2015 from the American Sociological Association sections on Political Sociology and Global-Transnational Sociology, and honorable mention from the Section on Comparative-Historical Sociology

"Two Multilevel Modeling Techniques for Analyzing Comparative Longitudinal Survey Datasets," 2014, Political Science Research and Methods

"ICT 4 Climate Change Adaptation: Systemic and Generative Perspectives & Tools," 2014, in 2nd International Conference on ICT for Sustainability (with Paul Shabajee, J-D Dewsbury, and Chris Preist)

"Rich People, Poor People, and Environmental Concern: Evidence across Nations and Time," 2013, European Sociological Review

"Does Inequality Erode Social Trust? Results from Multilevel Models of U.S. States and Counties," 2013, Social Science Research (with Isaac Martin)

"Trade Policymaking in the Real World: Elites' Conflicting Worldviews and North American Integration," 2010, Review of International Political Economy

"The Political Economy of Development: Institutional Perspectives," 2010, International Studies Association's International Compendium Project

"The Divergent Roles of Political and Economic Elites in NAFTA Countries," 2008, in Yildiz Atasoy (ed.) Hegemonic Transitions, the State and Neoliberal Crisis in Capitalism

"Making Neoliberalism Possible: The State's Organization of Business Support for NAFTA in Mexico," 2007, Politics & Society

"The Freedom of the State? Recent NDP Governments and a Reply to the Globalization Sceptics," 2003, Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology

Working Papers

"Fixed and Random effects: making an informed choice" (with Andrew Bell and Kelvyn Jones)

"The Political Economy of Religiosity: Development and Inequality Reconsidered"

"How Would Higher Mean Temperatures Affect Economic Growth? Evidence from Four Waves of G-Econ Data "

Recent Blog Posts

"What will Trump do about NAFTA?" (alternative version)

"Brexit, trust and the future of global environmental governance" (with Sean Fox)

"From Paris to Parliament: Is there a climate for action?" (alternative version)

"Will We Trust Governments on Climate?" (alternative version)

"Why Globalization Wins? Hint: It's Not Because of Democracy. Or Science."



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Page last updated: 24 February 2017