Learning Objectives

After reading this chapter, you should be able to understand:

  • the comparative method
  • what factors contribute to policy differences between, among, and within states
  • how moralistic, individualistic, and traditionalistic political cultures differ
  • the process of devolution
  • why the states are considered “laboratories of democracy”
  • what factors affect the ability of states to serve as “laboratories of democracy”
  • why some states are more innovative in terms of public policy than others
  • the power relationship between states and localities