45-130 Chapter 2.docx - Ethan Klinck 45-130 Comparative...

This preview shows page 1 - 3 out of 6 pages.

Ethan Klinck 45-130 January 11, 2017 Comparative Politics Dr. Elena Maltseva Chapter 2: Theories, Hypotheses, and Evidence Theory General explanations for empirical phenomena Theories generally have some support for its arguments in the real world More than just a guess about what will happen In comparative politics, theories are explanations for why things happen as they do Emphasis on cause and effect Broad generalizations about relationships between different aspect of society Explanations for why things happen the way they do Hypothesis A specific prediction that can be tested against empirical evidence Specific hypotheses are often derived from a theory In comparative politics, hypotheses are often about a certain case or set of cases If the hypothesis stands, it becomes a thesis Broader the better (more convincing) Formulating hypotheses is developing possible answers to a research question Often a deductive process: Move from general theories to specific observations or predictions about a set of cases We can often learn from “deviant cases” that do not fit the pattern predicted by a given theory Testing hypothesis can lead to a thesis Argument backed by evidence A thesis can then help us contribute to building theory (inductive process ) Deductive will be used more often than not How Theories Emerge and Are Used Theories generate testable hypotheses Evidence for theories comes from hypothesis tests Counter-arguments emerge Alternative theories to explain the same observed facts Evidence can contradict a theory “Exceptions to the rules” exist for most social theories Different theories compete and coexist Theories may “die” when replaced by better ones Ex.: earth-centered vs. sun-centered solar system Types of Evidence Note: discussion of evidence in chapter 1 Qualitative Analysis based on facts in narrative form Ex.: historical accounts and historical records Ex.: constitutions, laws, personal narratives, etc. Quantitative
Ethan Klinck 45-130 January 11, 2017 Comparative Politics Dr. Elena Maltseva Analysis using mathematical examination Typically involve a many cases or observations Both types of evidence can be used for inference Correlation and Causation Distinction between correlation and causation Correlation Relationship between two variables in which they tend to move in predictable relationship to one another Doesn’t always need caustion Can be in same direction (positive correlation) Ex.: wealth and democracy in countries Can be in opposite directions (negative correlation) Ex.: amount of absolute poverty and democracy in countries Causation Relationship in which one thing causes another In comparative politics, we try to understand causation between variables When we have caustion, there is also a correlation

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture