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Release: Immediate

International conference on legislatures to be held April 17-18 at UI

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Political scientists from all over the world will meet at the University of Iowa April 17-18 for a conference to compare the study of U.S. legislatures with the study of legislatures in Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

On Friday, April 17 the group will meet from 8:30 a.m.-noon in Room W401 Pappajohn Business Administration Building and from 1:30 -4:45 p.m. in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol. On Saturday, April 18 the conference will convene from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. in Room W401 Pappajohn Business Administration Building.

Among the 30 leading experts in the field who will participate in the conference are scholars from Brazil, the Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Kenya, Korea, Norway, Poland, and the Union of South Africa. Also participating in the conference will be specialists on legislatures from 14 U.S. universities.

"The conference is an attempt to redress the imbalance between the large volume of research on U.S. legislatures and our relatively limited knowledge of legislatures outside the United States," said Gerhard Loewenberg, a UI professor of political science and one of the conference organizers.

The scholars will discuss a variety of topics during the two-day meeting including: executive-legislative relations; party and committee systems in legislatures; the effects of rules of procedure; the influence of interest groups; and the selection and retention of members of legislatures. A concluding panel will discuss the role of legislatures in newly democratic systems, using the early experience of the U.S. Congress as a point of departure.

The conference is supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, the UI Benjamin F. Shambaugh Fund, and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation.

For more information about the conference, contact Loewenberg at 335-2345 or Peverill Squire at 335-2354.