Rationality and psychology in international politics pdf
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- Rational paranoia and enlightened machismo: the strange psychological foundations of realism
- Degrees of Rationality in Politics
Rational paranoia and enlightened machismo: the strange psychological foundations of realism
Herbert A. Simon and the concept of rationality: boundaries and procedures. This paper discusses Herbert A. Simon's conception of rationality in two of its principal general definitions: bounded rationality and procedural rationality. It argues that the latter is the one that better synthesizes the author's view about rational behavior and that the former fills mainly a critical function.
I t is commonly assumed that the validity of any theory should be judged against some or all of the following requirements and evaluating criteria: 1 descriptive accuracy; 2 internal logical coherence; and 3 predictive accuracy. In the rational-cognitive debate in international relations, cognitive psychologists tend to stress the importance of descriptive accuracy, while rational choice theorists emphasize the internal logical coherence and high predictive power. These different views correspond to the commonly shared beliefs about the relative performance of the two approaches. It is generally believed that cognitive approaches outperform rational choice in their empirical descriptions, while the rational choice theory tends to be more successful in meeting the other two requirements. Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF. Skip to main content.
This article focuses critically on realism as an International Relations IR theory family. It argues that realist theories share a particular view of human nature and that this view of human nature is flawed in several important respects. I begin by discussing the quality of human nature assumptions in realism and the way they are employed. The following section then argues that, in addition to its gloomy assumptions concerning the motives for human and state action, realism relies strongly on an assumption of rationality. This move splits descriptive from prescriptive realism and renders the paradigm both internally inconsistent and compatible in important respects with its rival paradigm of liberalism. I then turn to a critique of the neo-realist approach in particular, showing that and why in spite of claims to the contrary it cannot escape the foregoing critique. In conclusion, it emerges that the status of realism in the field of IR theory would likely sustain serious damage from a systematic examination of the nature and use of its claims about human nature.
Don't rely on these old notes in lieu of reading the literature, but they can jog your memory. As a grad student long ago, my peers and I collaborated to write and exchange summaries of political science research. I posted them to a wiki-style website. I cannot vouch for these notes' accuracy, nor can I even say who wrote them. If you have more recent summaries to add to this collection, send them my way I guess.
Degrees of Rationality in Politics
Commonsensical understandings of rationality. Neuroscience, emotion, and computation. This chapter looks at the contribution that rational models of choice can make to foreign policy analysis.