POLS 4422: NGOs and World Politics

A starting point for research on NGOs and world politics.

Information, Information, Everywhere!

Libraries locate, collect, preserve, describe, and organize A LOT of information so that people can access it for a variety of purposes.


There are many types of resources you can access through the GSU Library, for example:
  • Special Collections and Archives: Historical artifacts that convey information (and disinformation), in many forms.
  • Newspapers, Trade Magazines, and Popular Magazines: Articles published with the intent to quickly inform the public, often containing advertisements, errors, and forms of disinformation that may be updated or corrected over time.
  • Scholarly (peer-reviewed): Articles published according to a rigorous set of standards, and reviewed by professional peers. This includes open access literature and systematic reviews.
  • Empirical (scientific): Articles that are scholarly, but which also report findings of original scientific studies that address specific research questions.

This means that not everything inside a library's collection will meet your specific needs. The relevance of information you find while performing a systematic search is determined by your research scope.

Research Scope

To determine your research scope, you may set parameters by asking yourself:

  • What date range do I want to set for research publication?
  • Am I performing historical research? If so, I may be seeking information produced a long time ago.
  • Am I examining pop culture? If so, I may seek to explore popular magazines and newspapers.
  • Do I need to find first-person narratives for my research? If so, I may want to explore archival material, newspaper op-eds, or trade magazines.
  • Do I need more reliable information? If so, I may be seeking peer-reviewed journals and would select "peer-reviewed" when searching for articles inside scholarly databases.
  • Am I seeking a review of previous research in a certain area? If so, I may want to perform a title search that includes the terms "systematic review," "annual review," or "literature review."
  • Am I seeking resources that report the findings of original research? If so, I need to review article abstracts to look for identifying qualities like: methodology sections, results sections, and data visualizations.

From News to Encyclopedias

The Information Cycle follows the progession of coverage of a newsworthy event (i.e. current event) through various forms of media. Knowing about and understanding the information cycle will help you choose and evaluate information sources covering your topic.


Figure it out!

Here are two article records found in the Sociological Abstracts database - Which one is EMPIRICAL RESEARCH? 


The Division of Household Labor

Beth Anne Shelton, and John Daphne. Annual Review of Sociology 22 (1996): 299-322.

Abstract (summary)

In this chapter we review research on the division of household labor and its consequences. The review summarizes research focused on issues of measurement, including research on methods of gathering data on housework time and time use in general and discussions of various ways to operationalize the division of household labor. Some attention is paid to historical and theoretical work on housework and women's responsibility for it in particular, followed by a more detailed discussion of current empirical approaches to explaining the division of household labor as well as criticisms of these approaches. Finally, we review research that examines the consequences of the division of household labor, focusing on those studies that examine its impact on labor force participation and wages, marital and family satisfaction, psychological well-being, and perceptions of fairness.


Macro-Level Gender Inequality and the Division of Household Labor in 22 Countries 

Fuwa, Makiko. American Sociological Review 69 (2004): 751-767.

Abstract (summary)

While most previous studies focus on the effects of individuals' and couples' characteristics on the division of housework, this study argues that macro-level factors are equally important in the dynamics of housework distribution between spouses. Data from the 1994 International Social Survey Programme is used to examine whether macro-level gender inequality limits the effect of individual-level variables (relative resources, time availability, and gender ideology) on the division of housework in 22 industrialized countries. The results show that the equalizing effects of time availability and gender ideology are stronger for women in more egalitarian countries; women in less egalitarian countries benefit less from their individual-level assets. Additional analysis shows that other macro-level factors (economic development, female labor-force participation, gender norms, and welfare regimes) may also influence the division of housework. The results suggest that changes in individual-level factors may not be enough to achieve an equal division of housework without the reduction of macro-level gender inequality.

Which of the above articles are empirical?
ARTICLE 1 is emprical: 2 votes (14.29%)
ARTICLE 2 is empirical: 7 votes (50%)
BOTH are empirical: 4 votes (28.57%)
NEITHER are empirical: 1 votes (7.14%)
Total Votes: 14