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Terms in this set (13)
the tendency for small groups to form a consensus and resist criticism of a core position, often disregarding contradictory information in the process; group may ostracize members holding a different position. During the Vietnam War the Tuesday lunch group, which was a top group of US decision makers, rejected pessimistic information about North Vietnam's military buildup and about American casualties. Individuals not sharing the group's thinking were both formally and informally removed from the group.
Just War Theory
the idea that wars must be judged according to two categories of justice: (1) jus ad bellum, or the justness of war itself; and (2) jus in bello, or the justness of each actor's conduct in the war. This is not necessarily a pacifist theory because sometimes it is worse not to go to war. States are responsible for their actions during the war towards states and individuals, which leads to the norms of how to treat prisoners of war and civilians.
Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD)
a stalemate created by countries having the same amount of nuclear technology but not using it based on the realization that in nuclear war all the countries would be destroyed beyond hope of recovery. This was first discovered during the Cold War when the US and the USSR did not go to war because they recognized that although each one could have destroyed the other, their own country was in danger.
An alternative international relations theory that hypothesizes how ideas, norms, and institutions shape state identity and interests. Constructivists analyze culture, norms, procedures, and social practices to discover how identities change over time. They use texts, interviews, and research local practices. The theory seeks to understand the framework of events that occur in the international system by questioning the fundamental ideas behind state action.
Economic theory that the international commerce should increase a state's wealth, especially gold; state power is enhanced by a favorable balance of trade. This theory was prevalent during the first era of globalization (1844-1914) and was part of the justification used for imperialism and colonialism.
The liberal belief that only through specific liberal economic policies, especially privatization, can development result. Through the Bretton Woods institutions the idea that liberalizing economies was the best options for states was established, which has made liberal economics the norm in the international system. Stabilize, privatize, liberalize. The opposite of Import Substitution Industrialization which is an economic theory that suggests building industries first.
Hegemonic Stability Theory
Theory that a dominant state is needed to support an integrated world economy; the hegemon is willing to bear the costs of maintaining the system. Historically the hegemon has been a capitalist, free-market based country. The hegemon also believes that the system should remain as is to preserve the hegemon's power.
The process of increasing integration of the world in terms of economics, politics, communications, social relations, and culture. This process increasingly undermines traditional state sovereignty. There is a lot of debate over how globalization is affecting the economies of the world and how countries depend on each other.
Democratic Peace Theory
The theory supported by empirical evidence that democratic states do not fight wars against each other, but do fight wars against authoritarian states. Current transnational and international institutions bind democracies together which constrains their behaviors. Democratic norms and cultures inhibit aggression against each other.
Fungibility of Power
the idea that there are certain measures of power in the international system and fungibility of power questions whether those measures are able to truly influence people (are hard and soft power effective?) and whether they are translatable into influence - for example the way that OPEC put an embargo on the US and the US responded by looking into different sources of energy
Tragedy of the Commons
When herders are letting their sheep graze in a collective plot of land they attempt to follow individually rational behavior by increasing their flock. However, when each individual attempts to maximize his or her gain then the group suffers collectively and eventually the individual suffers. Decisions by one state affect all states, states can suffer negative consequences due to the actions of others.Resolutions to this problem include coercion or restructuring the preferences of states using rewards and punishments.
The Bretton Woods institutions are the World Bank, the IMF, and GATT (which is now the WTO). These institutions help expand economic liberalism. The period after WWII is known as the Bretton Woods era, especially after the gold standard ended in the 1970s and countries continued to use the US dollar as a standard. The dollar remains a reserve currency because of people's faith in the US's good credit, there is no alternative at this point, despite any problems the US might have.
Shadow of the Future
the shadow refers to the length of the game in an iterated prisoner's dilemma. The longer the shadow of the future, the more likely that there will be cooperation. In International Relations this is paralleled, people will cooperate more knowing that they will have to interact more.
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