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Politics as Rational Action

  • Couverture cartonnée
  • 292 Nombre de pages
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One of the most promising trends in modem political science is the develop ment of a theory of politics as rational action. Focuss... Lire la suite
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Description

One of the most promising trends in modem political science is the develop ment of a theory of politics as rational action. Focussing on choice as the central topic of study, rational choice theorists set out to specify what alter native an actor should prefer if he has some given knowledge of the conse quences of each alternative and wants to see his preference system as fully realized as possible. But rational choice theory is not confmed to the norma tive sphere of science. It can also be used for explanatory purposes. Then, the alternatives actually chosen are specified and the task is to explain the decisions by fmding out what considerations lay behind them. The starting point for an emerging research program at the Department of Government, Uppsala University, on 'Politics as Rational Action' is to describe the major choices in fifteen different policy areas of Swedish domes tic politics and explain why they were made.

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One of the most promising trends in modem political science is the develop­ ment of a theory of politics as rational action. Focussing on choice as the central topic of study, rational choice theorists set out to specify what alter­ native an actor should prefer if he has some given knowledge of the conse­ quences of each alternative and wants to see his preference system as fully realized as possible. But rational choice theory is not confmed to the norma­ tive sphere of science. It can also be used for explanatory purposes. Then, the alternatives actually chosen are specified and the task is to explain the decisions by fmding out what considerations lay behind them. The starting point for an emerging research program at the Department of Government, Uppsala University, on 'Politics as Rational Action' is to describe the major choices in fifteen different policy areas of Swedish domes­ tic politics and explain why they were made.



Contenu
Political Trust as Rational Choice.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Trust as an Attitude.- 3. A Definition of Trust.- 4. Deutsch's Definition of Trust.- 5. The Inadequacy of the Prisoners' Dilemma Model of Trust.- 6. Risk in the Prisoners' Dilemma.- 7. The Assessment of Risk.- 8. Rational Trust.- On 'Normative' Rational-Choice Theories of Politics.- 1. Introduction.- 2. The Liberal Theory of the State.- 3. The Destination of Small Communities.- 4. The State and the Decay of Voluntary Cooperation.- 5. Concluding Remarks.- Various Meanings of 'Rational Political Decisions'.- 1. Meanings of 'Politics'.- 2. One Actor: Decisions under Certainty.- 3. One Actor: Decisions under Risk.- 4. More than One Actor: Noncooperative Games.- 5. More than One Actor: Cooperative Games.- 6. Conclusion.- Political Aspects of Economic Power: A Critique of the Market Concept.- 1. Introduction.- 2. The Eclipse of Power in Economics: Power and Economic Law.- 3. Economic Power as Market Power.- 4. The Evidence: Tight Oligopoly and the Dominant Firm.- 5. Neglect of Bipartite Market Structure: Bilateral Monopoly.- 6. Inadequacy of Bipartite Market Paradigm: Multipartite Markets.- 7. External or Extra Market Power.- On the Significance of Language and a Richer Concept of Rationality.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Speech Acts.- 3. Rules of Political Interlocutions.- 4. The Element of Strategy in Political Interlocutions.- 5. On the Preference Structure of a Rational Political Actor.- 6. Conclusion.- Individual and Collective Rationality.- 1. Economic and Political Rationality.- 2. Discrete Social Choice Theory.- 3. Smooth Social Choice Theory.- 4. Conclusion.- Strategy and Reflexivity.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Problems of Reflexive Processes of Cognition.- 3. Reflexivity-Oriented Rationality and Socialization.- When Are Decision-Makers Irrational? Some Methodological Problems Related to the Analysis of Political Decision-Making.- 1. Introduction.- 2. An Empirical Example: Relocation of the Central State Administration in Sweden.- 3. Determining Preferences.- 4. Explaining Discrepancies.- Explaining Rational Political Action.- Some Problems in the Study of Party Strategies.- 1. On the Analysis of Party Strategies.- 2. Types of Empirical Material.- 3. Three Types of Studies.- 4. The Problem of Category Proliferation.- 5. The Problem of Circularity.- 6. A Research Program.- Housing, Building, and Planning.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Placing the 1974 Choice in Historical Perspective.- 3. Making the Meaning of the Alternatives as Precise as Possible in Order to Explain the Choice.- 4. Suggesting How the Choice, thus Stated, Might Possibly Be Explained.- Positions on Energy Policy: A General Framework and the Case of the Swedish Center Party in the Decision of May, 1975.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Elements of an Energy Policy Position.- 2.1. The Questions of Consideration; Managing Agencies; Finances; Supervision; and Form of Decision.- 2.2. The Goal Issue.- 2.3. Question of Management Subject: Kinds of Primary Energy Sources and Their Flow through Society.- 2.4. Policy Instruments.- 3. The Position of the Center Party.- 3.1. Long-Range Goals.- 3.2. Long-Range Policy Instruments.- 3.3. Middle-Range Goals.- 3.4. Middle-Range Policy Instruments.- Testing Coalition Theories: The Combined Evidence.- 1. Introduction.- 2. What Is an Event: Testing Theories or Predicting Coalitions?.- 3. The Combined Evidence: Comparing Methods and Data.- 4. The Combined Evidence.- 5. Conclusion.- The Dilemma of Rational Legislative Action: Some Danish Evidence.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Rational Behavior Models and Politics.- 2.1. Application Problems.- 2.2. Normative and Empirical Aspects.- 2.3. Individual Choice and Social Outcome.- 3. The Rationale of Legislative Specialization.- 4. Legislative Specialization in Denmark.- 5. Consequences of Legislative Specialization.- Implementation Analysis: The 'Missing Chapter' in Conventional Analysis Illustrated by a Teaching Exercise.- 1. Introduction.- 2. The Student's Assignment.- 3. Background on the University of Massachusetts Medical School.- 4. A 'Classic' Cost-Benefit Analysis.- 5. Guidelines for Critiquing Analysis: Notes on the Massachusetts Medical School Assignment.- 6. Epilogue: What Happened?.- About the Contributors.- Index of Names.- Index of Subjects.

Informations sur le produit

Titre: Politics as Rational Action
Éditeur:
Code EAN: 9789400989573
ISBN: 9400989571
Format: Couverture cartonnée
Editeur: Springer Netherlands
Genre: Sciences sociales, droit et économie
nombre de pages: 292
Poids: 446g
Taille: H235mm x B155mm x T15mm
Année: 2011
Auflage: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1980

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