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Tutor profile: Madison S.

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Madison S.
Public Policy and International Relations Student at Princeton
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Questions

Subject: Writing

TutorMe
Question:

What are the components of a great thesis and how can one develop a thesis?

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Madison S.
Answer:

A thesis acts to focus the paper and provides direction to the reader on what is to come. In order to achieve these goals, the thesis is placed early in the paper, preferably in the introductory paragraph, and contains what the paper argues and alludes to how the argument is supported. A great thesis is one that has a clearly defined and arguable claim so that a persuasive paper may be written from it. In order to develop a thesis, first decide what your particular niche in the subject will be. Looking at your primary sources, find areas that are vague or controversial. These are potential areas in the subject matter in which your own voice and research can shine through. Once you have found your niche in the subject matter, develop a working thesis as a launchpad for the rest of your paper. Be open to refine your thesis as your paper develops. After the paper is written, look back at your thesis to see if your paper reflects your original goal and refine your thesis as necessary.

Subject: International Relations

TutorMe
Question:

What is the role of the World Health Organization and how has it tackled some of global health's most pressing issues?

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Madison S.
Answer:

The World Health Organization is an agency of the United Nations responsible for the overseeing the health on a global scale. They are most closely associated with responding to and creating a response for health crises across the globe. One of its most prominent roles was fighting and eradicating smallpox in 1980 through a global eradication program. This program focused on technology innovations, such as the bifurcated needle, and mass vaccination campaigns through cross-country coordination.

Subject: Comparative Government and Politics

TutorMe
Question:

The Third Wave of Democratization brought democracy to unexpected countries. One of these countries is that of the Republic of Unfulfilled Potential (RUP), which is a poor, rural, non-Protestant country with high levels of inequality and ethnic fragmentation. Based on democratization research, what factors will be crucial in order for RUP's democracy will survive or not? What are some steps to help ensure democratic survival?

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Madison S.
Answer:

The Third Wave of Democratization brought about the state of the Republic of Unfulfilled Potential and the new democracy needs to have a consociational democracy, with high state capacity, inclusive political institutions, proportional representative voting, and a strong welfare regime to allow incentives for citizens to “buy-into” the democracy. These measures will help the RUP to overcome issues of inequality and ethnic fragmentation to survive the third reverse wave back to authoritarianism, as proposed by Huntington. The first challenge to overcome is that of ethnic fragmentation. In order to prevent ethnic conflict and separation of the state a consociational democracy is needed. This system, proposed by Lijphart, will allow all ethnicities to have a strong say in the government through a grand coalition of political leaders from all sectors of society. It is important though to not solely base the government off of ethnicity though, as this may lead to the problem of the ethnocracy trap, as proposed by Howard. In order to prevent this, the grand coalition must be malleable to change proportions of ethnicity in the country so to make sure the coalition and adequately represents the makeup of the country. It is also important that the state capacity is strong and almost border on the line of a developmental state as to build up the economy initially. As proposed by Fukuyama, the state must have high capacity in the size and scope of intervention in the economy and society to initially build up a strong foundation. The state must be strong to provide a legal and institutional backing to support capital endeavors, tend to citizens in need, and support democracy. This may be done by high levels of taxation of citizens. In order for citizens to be taxed at a high rate to uphold a strong state capacity, the state must also provide selective benefits to the citizens in exchange. This can be done through using welfare as a political tool as proposed by Haggard and Kaufman. Governments can selectively use welfare to gain popular support and mobilize the masses. As seen in East Asia, welfare was increased in its scope as to provide benefits to a wide range of people through education, but was not a deep coverage as to not lose support of wealthy elites. This idea may be used in the same way to help the RUP gain support of its citizens through universal welfare coverage. Once democracy is stable, it is important that there is a vibrant civil society to support the political institution. By participating in political parties to garnish support around ideals, this may help mobilize citizens to be active in the government. Brader and Tucker argue that stable parties help more citizens participate in the government by using heuristics and taking cues from the government. Since there are is ethnic fragmentation in this society, it will be important to elect officials through proportional representation, so that politicians are responsive to a wider base of citizens. This system will also help to support the growth of many political parties that will more adequately represent the diversity of individuals in the RUP, as proposed by Lijpahrt.

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