Notes - 9/5: Normative vs. Empirical - oughtquestions vs....

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9/5: Normative vs. Empirical - ought –questions vs. is -questions - Empirical analysis is centered on facts - Comparative method: systematic empirical description of similarities and dissimilarities Q: What do we compare? CP: Not just description - use facts to draw conclusions - they ‘why’ question - Use limited facts to generalize Q: Comparative politics about? A: 1. Description? Yes 1. Vale Judgments? No 2. Explanation? Basic research techniques in CP (comparative politics) Variables: phenomena that can change or vary 1. Dependant Variable : the effect in a cause-and-effect relationship 2. Independent/explanatory Variable : the cause (or potential cause); can change or affect dependant variable Finding Relationships: Correlations: relationship in which two or more variable change together - Can be Positive - Or Negative ( inverse) Countries with socialist parties in power tend to tax more and have bigger government* - Independent Variable (IV): is there a socialist party in charge in the nation? - Dependant Variable (DV): The tax rate of the government How to Find a Relationship Option 1: Case Study - Look at one country - Compare tax-rates/government size during times of socialist party control to times when socialist party is not in control Option 2: Multi-country statistical method - Look at multiple countries - Compare tax-rates/government suze in countries with socialist parties in control
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- With tax rates/government size in countries where socialists are not in control Laws: - Law: a regularly occurring association between two or more variables - Deterministic Law : association always occurs - Probabilistic Law : association occurs very frequently, but not always Theories and CP: - In political science, theories are mostly explanations More terms: - Hypothesis: assumption or supposition that needs to be tested against relevant evidence (an idea) - Model: Simplified representation of reality in descriptive or abstract form - understand basic aspects of a phenomenon by singling out its essential or typical features Rational choice theory as a model of behavior: - People make choices based on rational thinking. If a vote doesn’t affect them or matter, why vote? - Choices based on desire to ‘maximize utility’ - Elected politicians - The electorate - Interest groups - Alternatives: i.e. we are social animals (sociology); History matters 9/7: Political System – 1. Has a set of interdependent parts (schools, etc) 2. Has to be boundaries to the system Chapter 1: Main points/themes 1. Community Building – How does the poly system effect this? 2. How does the poly sys affect external security and internal order? 3. How does the PS affect the domestic economy? 4. Social Justice, how does your PS handle it? Chapter 2:
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This note was uploaded on 03/30/2008 for the course PL SC 014 taught by Professor Gartzke during the Fall '99 term at Penn State.

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Notes - 9/5: Normative vs. Empirical - oughtquestions vs....

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