Nov 29, 2023  
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog 
    
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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POL 420 Decision Making


Regardless of one’s theoretical predispositions, ultimately it is individuals who make decisions, act upon those decisions and influence the political phenomena we observe. It is unsurprising then that theories of political decision making are grounded in classical economical models of individual choice. Broad empirical evidence, however, brings the assumption of the homo economicus into serious question. Beginning with an overview of the agent-structure problem in the study of politics, this course is designed to give students a broad and rigorous overview of traditional and contemporary theories of individual decision making, including rational choice and game theory, behavioral economics, cognitive psychology and prospect theory, and new (controversial) theories based in biology and evolutionary psychology. Attention will be given to important substantive debates in the literature, including deterrence, social mobilization, and the relevance of individual decision making for interstate outcomes. Prerequisite(s): POL 105 , and POL 329 , POL 345  or POL 375 . 3 hour(s).



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