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John Hennessy III,

Kindred Spirits or Intergovernmental Competition? Policy Learning and the Adoption of Energy Policies in the American States (1990 – 2010)

Posted by Content Coordinator on Tuesday, February 14th, 2012


In this manuscript, we explore the adoption of high and low spillover energy policies while incorporating internal determinants of states and two mechanisms for policy diffusion. We examine the traditional neighboring states model for policy diffusion and a specification that tests whether states learn from peer groups as categorized by Walker (1969). We find strong evidence for state learning within peer groups and less support for diffusion across state borders. We do not find a consistently different patterns relating to the diffusion of high spillover versus low spillover policies. We find powerful relationships between state characteristics and policy adoption, as well as strong support for a hypothesis related to policy learning across state cohort groups. These results call into question the use of the neighboring states model, and raise questions about the mechanisms for state policy diffusion.

Download Full Study (PDF): Kindred Spirits or Intergovernmental Competition? Policy Learning and the Adoption of Energy Policies in the American States (1990 – 2010)

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