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A Quantitative Tour of the Social Sciences - download pdf or read online

By Andrew Gelman, Jeronimo Cortina

ISBN-10: 0521680034

ISBN-13: 9780521680035

ISBN-10: 0521861985

ISBN-13: 9780521861984

To foster a deeper knowing of the interconnection of the social sciences, economists may still recognize the place old info come from, sociologists may still know the way to imagine like economists, political scientists would receive advantages from knowing how versions are verified in psychology, historians should still find out how political procedures are studied, psychologists should still comprehend sociological theories, etc. This assessment through widespread social scientists offers an available, non-technical feel of the way quantitative learn is finished within the social sciences. Upon completing this e-book, the reader must have a feeling of the several types and alternative ways of considering in economics, historical past, sociology, political technology and psychology, which in flip they could carry again to their significant box.

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Extra info for A Quantitative Tour of the Social Sciences

Example text

We’re used to thinking of government as one thing and private enterprise as another, but there’s a lot of discussion in the social sciences about how these categories blur. On the one hand, areas of government can act like private businesses – sometimes in a good way, by serving customer demand and allocating resources, and sometimes less beneficially to the public interest, for example by charging the taxpayer for no-bid construction projects. On the other hand, large corporations and labor unions are like governments in that they must balance many different internal interests, and on a personal level they can provide a promise of security that is one of the traditional functions of government.

Another reason why Axelrod might have been led to construct his complicated model is that, historically speaking, cooperation among soldiers on opposite sides of a battle has been unusual, and thus an elaborate explanation might seem to be required. However, this does not really address the question of whether his fundamental assumptions are reasonable. From the perspective of game theory, other models such as coordination games might be more appropriate (see, for example, Snidal 1985). In fact, the very stability of cooperation in First World War trenches, and the fact that the commanders had to devise elaborate schemes to thwart it, argues for the claim that joint cooperative behavior was a stable solution to the “game” for soldiers on both sides, and thus it was no prisoner’s dilemma at all.

With a large population of such players, the norm of cooperation becomes stable, to the extent that, in the First World War, commanders had to actually change the rules of the game (for example, by forcing soldiers to make raids) in order to eliminate cooperative behavior. ) and also, from a moral point of view, it gives some hope that cooperation might be possible in a hostile world. WHY TRENCH WARFARE IS ACTUALLY NOT A PRISONER’S DILEMMA Having presented Axelrod’s argument, I’d like to tell you why I think it’s wrong.

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A Quantitative Tour of the Social Sciences by Andrew Gelman, Jeronimo Cortina


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