Saturday, March 24, 2012

Breaking Down Fearon 1995

This is the first in a semi-regular series on prominent applications of game theory to the study of international conflict.\(^1\) My goal is to clarify the main contribution of the piece. I'll do so first by offering a brief synopsis before going through the key claims in more detail. Along the way, I'll try to note some of the important implications and points of common confusion. Assuming that format makes sense to you all, I'll do the same with future articles.

We begin with what I consider to be the single most important contribution to the study of international conflict in the last 25 years: Fearon's Rationalist Explanations for War.