Rational Choice Theory and International Law: Insights and Limitations

Posted: 8 Nov 2002

See all articles by Robert Keohane

Robert Keohane

Duke University - Department of Political Science

Abstract

Rational choice theory has been valuable in the study of international law in five ways:

1) as a basis for skepticism about talk and action; 2) as a menu of causal mechanisms; 3) as a way of explaining specific puzzles; 4) as part of an explanation of legal and political phenomena; and 5) as the basis for generating further puzzles for research.

It does not, however, provide a comprehensive explanation of international law and politics. Those who apply it need to be aware of its limitations as well as of its value.

Suggested Citation

Keohane, Robert, Rational Choice Theory and International Law: Insights and Limitations. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=302825

Robert Keohane (Contact Author)

Duke University - Department of Political Science ( email )

326 Perkins Library
Durham, NC 27708-0204
United States
919-660-4322 (Phone)

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
937
PlumX Metrics