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POL208Y5 (129)
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Nov. 19 - First Image II

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Department
Political Science
Course
POL208Y5
Professor
Todd Hall
Semester
Fall

Description
Nov. 19 – First Image Part 2 How do we understand leadership behaviour? - Hard to isolate what difference a leader makes 1) Personality - Leaders’ personalities - Personality (Winter): individually patterned integration of processes of perception, memory, judgement, goal-seeking and emotional expression and regulation o Ways we think, act, express ourselves that make us unique and recognizably unique o Individuality by variation of traits we possess - One approach made was: (A) Psychobiography – Sigmund Freud  Looking at the childhood experiences; basically psychoanalysis of individual  This method, this assumption of psychoanalyzing leaders, quite popular  In 1943, Dr. Henry A. Murray • Was asked by OSS (pre-cursor to CIA) to do an examination of Hitler’s personality • Found that Hitler needs to overcome wounds of childhood. His personality is an example of the counter active type. Wounds can be traced from father who abused his mother and his siblings. Hitler was also scarred from witnessing his parents engage in sexual intercourse.  Idea is that can look at formative experiences of childhood • Murray was accurate in predicting Hitler’s suicide o Psychobiography – Alexander George book on Woodrow Wilson  “Woodrow Wilson and Colonel House”  Woodrow Wilson’s relationship with his father and feeling inferior made him desire power but he was incredibly insecure  He would not make compromises with his adversaries in the House of Representative because he was too riddled and unable to deal with criticism which stems from his relationship with his father  His inability to compromise led to the United States not joining League of Nations - Another method: (B) Standardized Personality Traits  Some willing to accept to risks, some have better control, etc  Can find patterns within leaders and apply that to how they will behave in the future (1) Motives (Goals, desire, ambitions, psychological needs) • Wants, needs and desires • Led by emotions (2) Cognition (Beliefs, attitudes, convictions, complexity) • How you interpret the world, how you treat information and others • Are you able to deal with complex issues or do you always simplify • Are you convinced that the world is full of enemies or are you convinced that human nature is good? (3) Temperament and Disposition (Extroversion, charisma, energy, emotional stability) • E.g. German Kaiser during WWI was all over the place = emotionally unstable E.g. George W. Bush and Iraq? - Some say he had view to impose democracy, to avenge failings of his father who did not follow through in 1991 => Motive - He saw the world in black and white = either with the US or against them => Cognitive - Some say he was predisposed to making a decision and sticking to it. That he was not welcoming of criticism but that he was malleable in terms of external advisement => Temperament  More the most part, these distinctions have fell out in terms of IR 2) Generalizable Models of Leadership Decision Making (the more standard method) o What is shared amongst leaders to apply to decision making process- does not look at differences of individuals o Model: simplified model of representation that captures the essential features (A) Rational Choice  For IR, rational choice refers to procedural, not substantive rationality – the matter of selecting actions, not goals  Not about what you want; it is how you get it  Choosing most appropriate means to maximize the end goals  Applying this analysis to IR: quite popular in IR today. o Case: Cuban Missile Crisis o Beliefs about probably outcomes – choosing the appropriate means to maximize, achieve, the end  Actions available to Kennedy – diplomacy, blockade, attack  These options have different probable outcomes o Preferences (utility)  (1) Nukes Gone – nuclear weapons removed Cuba, no war with the USSR (+50)  (2) Nukes Explode – war with USSR (-100)  (3) Nukes Stay – nuclear weapons remain on Cuba (-50) o Beliefs about probably outcomes  Diplomacy – greater probability of nukes staying  Blockade – greater probability of nukes gone  Attack – greater probability of nukes exploding o Probability of outcome x the utility of that outcome  Blockade is the best option  This is assuming risk neutrality throughout the model  Interest of these equations is comparative statics o Hold everything else constant while looking at one factor and changing it o Which factor plays a role in the decision and how changing it will change the final decision Rational Choice – Review 1) Rational actors can have any preferences 2) Rational actors will choose the option that maximizes their utility given their preferences 3) The choice of a rational actor is determined by their beliefs about the likelihood of actions leading to outcomes and the value they assign to those outcomes (B) Bounded Rationality (opposing view)  Arguments: we are not super computers; human beings have limitations on ability to process information, think through things. These limitations prevent us from acting in the manner discussed in rational choice model. (1) Cognitive Shortcuts a. Analogy • instead of thinking through all the details of the situation, just say this situation is like a previous situation and will act like that or avoid what was done in the previous situation • E.g. Cuban Missle Crisis o Kennedy had read a book called the Guns og August o Argument of book was that no one in WW1 wanted WW1 – the war broke out because of misconception, and poor communication over incentives of others o Kennedy had this in his head before entering the crisis; therefore, he pulled back ships in order to give the Soviet Union more time o Afraid of the outcomes of WW1 • E.g. Vietnam war o President Johnson’s administration looked at Munich’s Hitler as an analogy in attacking Vietnam b. Habit • We don’t think about what we are going to do; actions are just an act of habit c. Stereotypes • Easier than having to figure out the types of individuals we are dealing with (2) Incrementalism  When we face decisions, do we always think to the end?  Therefore, incrementalism is making decisions as they come instead of thinking of the end state and thinking of the means to get there Bounded Rationality - Take away point: people are limited by their cognitive resources – we are not supercomputers - Therefore, this can limit our decision-making (C) Prospect Theory (Cognitive Psychology) - Kahneman and Tversky  Have taken bounded rationality studies further -- Interested in the study of risk  How do people react, respond to, situations of risk  Depending on the situation, the way its framed, people will respond differently from what should be expected of a rational actor  Prospect theory defines: people are willing to gamble when they can potentially lose something but they will go for the
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