Advanced search
1 file | 108.06 KB

A pragmatist approach to the plurality of explanations in international relations theory

Rogier De Langhe (UGent) , Erik Weber (UGent) and Jeroen Van Bouwel (UGent)
Author
Organization
Abstract
One of the main problems scientists –physicists and political scientists alike- face, is the problem of the plurality of explanations. Graham Allison’s classic study of the Cuban Missile Crisis is an excellent example of problem-focused research and an intriguing instance of this problem in International Relations Theory. He leaves us with three versions of the events, which raised more questions than Allison could apparently answer: instructions for concerted action or discrimination between his ‘conceptual models’ remain very sketchy. This paper aims to show that replacing Allison’s use of Hempel’s (then fashionable but now rather outdated) covering-law model of explanation with a pragmatist account of explanation offers a way to break the deadlock Allison was faced with. In particular, we will show that a specification of the epistemic interests of the explainer enables us to narrow down the number of available explanations.

Downloads

  • SGIR Turin 2007 Rogier De Langhe - Erik Weber - Jeroen Van Bouwel.pdf
    • full text
    • |
    • open access
    • |
    • PDF
    • |
    • 108.06 KB

Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

Chicago
De Langhe, Rogier, Erik Weber, and Jeroen Van Bouwel. 2007. “A Pragmatist Approach to the Plurality of Explanations in International Relations Theory.” In 6th Pan-European Conference on International Relations, Proceedings. The Standing Group of International Relations of the ECPR.
APA
De Langhe, R., Weber, E., & Van Bouwel, J. (2007). A pragmatist approach to the plurality of explanations in international relations theory. 6th Pan-European conference on international relations, Proceedings. Presented at the 6th Pan-European Conference on International Relations (SGIR - 2007), The Standing Group of International Relations of the ECPR.
Vancouver
1.
De Langhe R, Weber E, Van Bouwel J. A pragmatist approach to the plurality of explanations in international relations theory. 6th Pan-European conference on international relations, Proceedings. The Standing Group of International Relations of the ECPR; 2007.
MLA
De Langhe, Rogier, Erik Weber, and Jeroen Van Bouwel. “A Pragmatist Approach to the Plurality of Explanations in International Relations Theory.” 6th Pan-European Conference on International Relations, Proceedings. The Standing Group of International Relations of the ECPR, 2007. Print.
@inproceedings{1895032,
  abstract     = {One of the main problems scientists --physicists and political scientists alike- face, is the problem of the plurality of explanations. Graham Allison{\textquoteright}s classic study of the Cuban Missile Crisis is an excellent example of problem-focused research and an intriguing instance of this problem in International Relations Theory. He leaves us with three versions of the events, which raised more questions than Allison could apparently answer: instructions for concerted action or discrimination between his {\textquoteleft}conceptual models{\textquoteright} remain very sketchy. This paper aims to show that replacing Allison{\textquoteright}s use of Hempel{\textquoteright}s (then fashionable but now rather outdated) covering-law model of explanation with a pragmatist account of explanation offers a way to break the deadlock Allison was faced with. In particular, we will show that a specification of the epistemic interests of the explainer enables us to narrow down the number of available explanations.},
  author       = {De Langhe, Rogier and Weber, Erik and Van Bouwel, Jeroen},
  booktitle    = {6th Pan-European conference on international relations, Proceedings},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Turin, Italy},
  pages        = {17},
  publisher    = {The Standing Group of International Relations of the ECPR},
  title        = {A pragmatist approach to the plurality of explanations in international relations theory},
  url          = {http://turin.sgir.eu/uploads/De\%20Langhe-SGIR\%20Rogier\%20De\%20Langhe\%20-\%20Erik\%20Weber\%20-\%20Jeroen\%20Van\%20Bouwel.pdf},
  year         = {2007},
}