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Level of analysis / level of theoretical abstraction explaining outcomes by: PowerPoint Presentation
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Level of analysis / level of theoretical abstraction explaining outcomes by:

Level of analysis / level of theoretical abstraction explaining outcomes by:

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Level of analysis / level of theoretical abstraction explaining outcomes by:

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  1. Level of analysis / level of theoretical abstractionexplaining outcomes by: • Just story telling = history. But even history cannot avoid decisions on what is significant and what is not • Individual leader • Internal political system and their interactions /comparative politics • States as actors ( without looking into this “black box”) • Society of states ( = sum of the black boxes; “English School” ) • The global system as such with its proper dynamics ( “world system theory” egWallerstein )

  2. Should one use “panel studies” ( multi variant analysis) to deal with trends?? • Very common practice ( look at any of the major journals on international/global affairs ) • Drawbacks: problem of “n” • Problem of many variables including many unknown ones ( 200 reasons for the decline of Rome ) • Look at the trends as such • Only the long term counts: world wars did not make any significant changes

  3. The linear trend • Constant ( non accelerating ) growth of the sum • Eg: growth of the global surface under agricultural production • In real world rather rare ( most trends are non linear ) • Still most frequently used in correlation – analysis ( because it is simple mathematically ) • The use of correlation = does not equal causation. Nonetheless useful for “falsification”

  4. Non – linear; geometric • Eg: Malthus / Ehrlich (the population bomb = standing room only on earth ) • Is also rare in reality ( declining usefulness of a “genetic information” = warrior society: business model ) • At the upper end other reasons for slowdown

  5. The “organic” S - Curve • Most common form of a trend of both biological and social phenomena • Famous metaphor: water lilies on a pond • Population affected by HIV • Yield in relation to input of fertilizer • Ownership of cell – phones • Number of wealthy states as compared to number of democracies • Growth in the wealth of a single state

  6. S – Curves adding upeg: total “World GDP” • The inflection point and the era of slowing global economic growth is shifted into the future as the newcomers – like South Korea or now China – are growing faster than did the first “”modernizer “Great Britain 150 years ago

  7. The bell shaped curvethe rise and fall of everything • Examples • The relative power of states ( their share of power; whatever that is ) • Kuznets curve ( income inequality and “environmental Kuznets curve” ) • Number of children per fertile mother surviving until the age of five

  8. Ruptures; discontinuities • Examples • Population of Easter Islands • Number of towns with more than 5.000 inhabitants North of the Alps ( 10 AD– 600 AD ) • Complex systems between fragility and resilience

  9. The global warming “hockey – stick” • What happened at this inflection point?? • A new factor was added

  10. Two versions/ interpretations of the tool of “scenarios” • A) Projection into the future of current trends ( “surprise free scenarios”) • B) speculations on intrusion of new factors that might change the course • C) Note: social systems are self – reflective ( eg environmental “Kuznets Curve”; or disarmament )