A Win or a Flop? Identifying and Estimating Unintended Protest Costs in Measuring Success Outcomes

Kimberly Turner (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale)

Abstract: How we measure protest success and how to identify and measure the lagged effects of movements has long besieged the field. Estimating the full impact of a movement, both its intended and unintended consequences, is undermined by the lack of consensus on defining, much less measuring what constitutes a protest success. This study examines whether protests occurring in states experiencing rapid and large increases in their university graduate population are more successful than protests in states lacking such growth in education attainment. This study seeks to address gaps in previous literature by treating protest success as multidimensional, includes time effects, and identifies and measures the positive and negative unintended impacts of a movement in the one-year period after a movement concludes. Utilizing a difference in difference design, I conduct a cross-country comparison of movement outcomes.

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