System Effects: Complexity in Political and Social Life

System Effects Complexity in Political and Social Life Based on than three decades of observation Robert Jervis concludes in this provocative book that the very foundations of many social science theories especially those in political science are faulty

  • Title: System Effects: Complexity in Political and Social Life
  • Author: Robert Jervis
  • ISBN: 9780691005300
  • Page: 449
  • Format: Paperback
  • Based on than three decades of observation, Robert Jervis concludes in this provocative book that the very foundations of many social science theories especially those in political science are faulty Taking insights from complexity theory as his point of departure, the author observes that we live in a world where things are interconnected, where unintended consequBased on than three decades of observation, Robert Jervis concludes in this provocative book that the very foundations of many social science theories especially those in political science are faulty Taking insights from complexity theory as his point of departure, the author observes that we live in a world where things are interconnected, where unintended consequences of our actions are unavoidable and unpredictable, and where the total effect of behavior is not equal to the sum of individual actions Jervis draws on a wide range of human endeavors to illustrate the nature of these system effects He shows how increasing airport security might actually cost lives, not save them, and how removing dead trees ostensibly to give living trees room may damage the health of an entire forest Similarly, he highlights the interconnectedness of the political world as he describes how the Cold War played out and as he narrates the series of events with their unintended consequences that escalated into World War I.The ramifications of developing a rigorous understanding of politics are immense, as Jervis demonstrates in his critique of current systemic theories of international politics especially the influential work done by Kenneth Waltz Jervis goes on to examine various types of negative and positive feedback, bargaining in different types of relationships, and the polarizing effects of alignments to begin building a foundation for a realistic, nuanced, theory of international politics System Effects concludes by examining what it means to act in a system It shows how political actors might modify their behavior in anticipation of system effects, and itexplores how systemic theories of political behavior might account for the role of anticipation and strategy in political action This work introduces powerful new concepts that will reward not only international relations theorists, but also all social scientists with interests in comparative politics and political theory.

    One thought on “System Effects: Complexity in Political and Social Life”

    1. This is a necessary book which combines parts of complexity theory and systems theory with political science and diplomacy.International politics is complicated. It is difficult to determine causal relationships or even try to affect bilateral change. International politics is a system in that it is composed of multiple "units or elements [that] is interconnected so that changes in some elements or their relations produce changes in other parts of the system, and the entire system exhibits prope [...]

    2. Jervis outlines complex adaptive systems theory and provides substance to the methodology primarily through examples relating to international relations. Slow in parts, but provides interesting case studies--revisits WWI and the Cold War multiple times.

    3. I will call it one of the best books on strategy and a must for anyone trying to grapple with strategy and its implications/ ramification with in a certain system.

    4. I have a whole book review powerpoint pdf dedicated to this book, only if there's function lmaoIt renders me cray I'm telling you. I broke down and sobbed my fucking life out along the the clusterfuck that is MA thesis administration.Probably have to refer to it again and read it carefully for the thesis instead of skim reading and focus on parts so I will mark it as finished later, when I read it more comprehensively.

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