Taking Evolution Seriously in Political Science

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dc.contributor.author LEWIS, Orion
dc.contributor.author STEINMO, Sven
dc.date.accessioned 2011-04-19T12:48:31Z
dc.date.available 2011-04-19T12:48:31Z
dc.date.issued 2010
dc.identifier.citation Theory In Biosciences, 2010, 129, 02-mar, 235-245
dc.identifier.issn 1431-7613
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1814/16539
dc.description.abstract In this essay, we explore the epistemological and ontological assumptions that have been made to make political science scientific. We show how political science has generally adopted an ontologically reductionist philosophy of science derived from Newtonian physics and mechanics. This mechanical framework has encountered problems and constraints on its explanatory power, because an emphasis on equilibrium analysis is ill-suited for the study of political change. We outline the primary differences between an evolutionary ontology of social science and the physics-based philosophy commonly employed. Finally, we show how evolutionary thinking adds insight into the study of political phenomena and research questions that are of central importance to the field, such as preference formation.
dc.language.iso en
dc.publisher Springer
dc.subject Philosophy of science
dc.subject Evolutionary theory
dc.subject Complex adaptive systems
dc.subject Behavioralism
dc.subject New institutionalisms
dc.title Taking Evolution Seriously in Political Science
dc.type Article
dc.identifier.doi 10.1007/s12064-010-0097-5
dc.identifier.volume 129
dc.identifier.startpage 235
dc.identifier.endpage 245
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dc.identifier.issue 02-mar

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