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POL208.OCT19.docx

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Department
Political Science
Course
POL208Y1
Professor
Jean- Yves Haine
Semester
Fall

Description
LAST WEEK - Globalization as main characteristic of international system - Realists consider the i.s. as anarchy, self-help, security - Impact of liberalism and unsuccessful attempts to projecting domestic liberal systems to i.s. - Constructivists depict another reality to the system itself - Little have been said about individual leaders and decision makers and process of decision making DECISION MAKERS/MAKING - Until very recently, the mainstream I.R. theorists thought it was impossible to reconstruct intention of decision making—to complex, unreachable for experts and scholars, cannot put ourselves in the brain of decision makers - Last 2 decades, attempt to understand how decision makers make decisions, though complex, try to define motivation Individual - Classic rational choice model o At its core, it is about choosing what we perceive as the best option given the ability to fulfill your objective o If you are a decision maker/leader, have to select your objective/goal to analyze the option at end, and to maximize the expected utility o There are some assumptions about rational choice model 1) All information is indeed available, in IP it is a far-fetch assumption to make 2) You are rational in the sense that you are able to define hierarchy among your option, able to calculate costs and benefits attached these options, hierarchy is defined simply, option a is better option b, and option b is better than option c, than option a is better than option c; all depend son expected utilty you attach o based on intention and objective; standard model for economics o given rise to “game theory”; formal ways of analyzing decision making...like a game of chess, one move leads to another, the analysists try reconstruct what has happened in terms of interaction between two states, game theory formal way of looking at IP, especially useful in looking at deterrence  Thomas Sheling; strategic thinker using game theory model looking at deterrence, had impact on decision makers, useful to help leaders to consider what would the implication of nuclear detrence be o Limited in international politics because all the information most of the time is not available, amount of uncertainty bigger than certainty o Goal must be precisely defined, need to know what a leader wants, and that’s not always very clear o All the options must be on the table, the decision-maker does not have all the time in the world to make decisions, CNN asking for decisions and news media pressuring on the way leaders are making decisions (e.g. Cuban missile crisis, Kennedy October 1962 called their friends in NY times and National Post to be quiet for 10 days to need time to solve the crisis, don’t want any leaks from the press, still able to control the environment...today the environment is very different, no longer possible, leaks have become part of the daily life, media far more decentralized than it used to be), time pressure on decision makers it tremendous o “bounded rationality” instead of instrumental rationality, in rational choice model, we underline a rational way of thinking, but the advancement cognitive psychology all the work has been done by cognitive psychologists, individuals do not demonstrate rationality, Edward Simmon; underlined that very often individual do not maximize expected utility, rather they will pick an option that satisfied their minimal objective...gap between optimization and satifisfaction, the process is different with satisifaction it is based on sequence rather than calculus, decision-maker that has several options will stop once they found an option that makes satisfication criteria, no calculation between the options...sequence is about the first one that seems to be good enough; bounded rationaility refer to individual limited capacity to process information rather than over-viewing all the options, the process stops once you have an option that meets your minimal satifiscation criteria, picks the first one that seems good enough for you...huge difference between
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