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Poverty and Democracy To Be Discussed March 27

By Lori Wright, Media Relations
March 26, 2008

How democracy can lift people out of poverty is the focus of the next Saul O Sidore Memorial Lecture at UNH.

Jon Hiskey, associate professor of political science at Vanderbilt University will discuss the ability of democracy to address poverty and income inequality in the developing world Thursday, March 27. Lecture starts at 4 p.m. in the MUB Theater II. It is free and open to the public.

Hiskey has examined how Mexico’s uneven democratization process has affected local economic development and citizens’ attitudes toward and involvement with their political system. He is studying the impact that high levels of emigration have had on Mexican communities’ political and economic development as well as the local development consequences of subnational political transitions across Latin America.

“Democracy in theory has many aspects that should help with poverty alleviation, and indeed there is a lot of empirical evidence to suggest it helps with infant mortality, famine, and social spending. However, in the current world of developing democracies -- a world occupied by highly imperfect and uneven democracies -- there are many reasons to be concerned about the relationship between these types of democracies and poverty alleviation,” Hiskey says.

His work has appeared in many of the top journals of political science, including the American Journal of Political Science, the British Journal of Political Science, Comparative Politics, and the Latin American Research Review.

The Saul O Sidore Memorial Lecture Series was established in 1965 in memory of Saul O Sidore of Manchester. The series offers programs that raise critical and sometimes controversial issues facing our society. The UNH Center for the Humanities sponsors the program. For more information visit http://www.unh.edu/humanities-center/Events_Sidore.html.


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