International Relations as a Social Science: Rigor and Relevance
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Lake, David A.
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CitationFrieden, Jeffry A., and David A. Lake. 2005. “International Relations as a Social Science: Rigor and Relevance.” The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 600 (1) (July): 136–156. doi:10.1177/0002716205276732.
AbstractProgress in the study of international politics depends on systematic, rigorous theory and empirical testing. International Relations is most useful when scholars can identify with some confidence the causal forces that drive foreign policy and international interactions, not when they use their detailed empirical knowledge to offer opinions, however intelligent and well informed. Deterrence theory, the democratic peace research program, and the political economy of trade policy demonstrate the importance of both theory and empirical research in enhancing the understanding of international relations. The bargaining theory of war and open economy politics are the current frontiers of research on international relations and promise even greater understanding in the future.
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