13 avr« Perception and Misperception 40 years later: Reputation in IR », Robert Jervis (Columbia University), Lundi 28 Avril 2014

Perception and Misperception 40 years later: Reputation in IR

Robert Jervis (Columbia University)

In the almost 40 years since Perception and Misperception, was published, there has been an enormous amount of relevant research in psychology and political psychology. While I think little of it contradicts what I said, it does move in directions that I didn’t explore or that I implied were dead ends. The most important, I believe, concerns the role–or rather the roles–of emotion. First of all, it is clear that the previous habit of contrasting emotion to reason (and exalting the latter) is badly misleading. It is also clear that perceptions can be driven by psychological needs, and what are called « motivated biases » can be very powerful. Indeed I think it is fair to say that psychological and political needs share pride of place with expectations as the prime determinants of perceptions in the political realm (see my « Understanding Beliefs » in the journal Political Psychology).

Another important development is Prospect Theory, which argues that people are much more risk-acceptant when they are in the realm of losses than they are when they are in the realm of gains, something that may be a part of human nature, as I argued in another Political Psychology article. This means that wars are particularly likely when both sides believe they are in the realm of losses, a danger compounded by the difficulty of understanding that the adversary feels it is in this situation.

Work on the biological roots of perception and behavior in the forms of genetics and the neurobiology of the brain hold promise, but also are in the early stages of development and some skepticism is in order.

For many years, much work in IR and other fields was based on a rational choice theory of reputation. Indeed, this was the approach I used in my first book, The Logic of Images in International Relations. The books by John Mercer and Daryl Press have cast this into doubt, although Gregory Miller’s recent book reasserts the older view with better research. The topic is without doubt extremely important and deserves deeper conceptualization and research. But I think it is clear that there is much to the point made by Snyder and Diesing 40 years ago–leaders are very concerned about their own reputations but pay much less attention to those of others. Contrary to the American preoccupation (shared with other countries?), backing down in one instance does not automatically lead to a reputation for being weak or irresolute.

Discussant: Gloria Origgi (CNRS, ENS-EHESS)

Lundi 28 Avril 17.00-19.00
Lieu: Sciences Po, salle 511, 199 blvd St. Germain (rez-de-chaussée)

06 avr » Éthique, défense, sécurité et agents artificiels autonomes », Jean-Gabriel Ganascia (Paris 6), Jeudi 24 Avril 2014

Éthique, défense, sécurité et agents artificiels autonomes

Jean-Gabriel Ganascia (Paris 6, Pierre et Marie Curie)

Les agents artificiels autonomes prennent une part de plus en plus grande dans la vie quotidienne, que ce soit dans le monde physique, avec la robotique manufacturière, la robotique de service ou les drones, ou dans le monde virtuel, avec les « bots », les « malwares » (maliciels en français), etc. S’ils procurent puissance et confort, ces agents sont aussi source de nouvelles vulnérabilités. Il n’y a donc rien d’étonnant à ce qu’ils acquièrent de plus en plus d’importance dans le monde de la défense et de la sécurité. Après avoir rapidement passé en revue les applications militaires et policières actuelles de ces agents, nous verrons en quoi on peut évoquer des questions d’ordre éthique à propos de leur comportement. Nous montrerons ensuite comment approcher la programmation de ces agents en s’inspirant des cadres conceptuels posés par certaines approches philosophiques de l’éthique. Ce faisant, il se trouve que la notion de conflit, centrale pour l’éthique, provoque des incohérences logiques que doivent surmonter les programmes d’intelligence artificiel qui supervisent ces agents. Cela conduit à l’introduction de formalismes de représentation non monotones que l’on évoquera. Nous montrerons ensuite, comment ces modélisations ont pu être mises à profit par des roboticiens comme Ron Arkins pour légitimer la réalisation de « robots soldats » qui se substitueraient aux hommes dans les théâtres d’opérations. Nous conclurons en indiquant les limitations intrinsèques de ces approches et en proposant d’autres perspectives qui précisent la part des agents artificiels dans la prise de décision.

Discutantes : Amélie Ferey, Marine Guillaume

Jeudi 24 Avril, 17.00-19.00

Salle du Conseil, Sciences Po, 13, rue de l’Université – 5ème étage

05 mar« Droit international et théorie politique internationale », Jean-Marc Coicaud (Rutgers University), Mercredi 19 Mars 2014

Jean-Marc Coicaud, Droit international et théorie politique internationale : comprendre le present, revisiter le passé et offrir une vision pour le futur

Cette présentation s’inscrit dans le cadre d’un livre en cours que Jean-Marc Coicaud développe actuellement sur le thème de la justice globale pour Cambridge University Press. Elle se concentrera sur les relations entre le droit international et la justice internationale et la justice globale. De ce point de vue, l’accent sera mis sur trois questions: les défis que le droit international rencontre aujourd’hui dans le contexte de la globalisation; une vision alternative de l’histoire du droit international; une critique philosophique du droit international; et quelques pistes de recherche pour le passage du droit international inter-étatique a un droit international plus cosmopolite.

Mercredi 19 Mars 17.00-19.00
SALLE DU CONSEIL, 13, rue de l’Université, 5ème étage

Discutant : Andrei Poama (Sciences Po)

02 juin« The War to End War », Oona Hathaway (Yale), Mardi 25 Juin 2013

Oona Hathaway (Yale), The War to End War

Attached are portions of a book manuscript that I am writing with my colleague, Professor Scott Shapiro. I have provided you with the introduction, which attempts to set the stage and preview the argument of the book, and the fourth chapter. Those who are pressed for time should focus on the introduction alone.
The first three chapters of the book (which are not included here) describe what we call the Old World Order—a system that relied on war as the linchpin of law. The first chapter centers on Grotius and the legal order he established. The second chapter shows that war was a source of legal redress and legal rights. The legal rights to territory, people, and goods were decided by war—even one that was entirely unjust. The third chapter examines what followed from the legality of war and of conquest and how those rules in turn shaped the international legal system that persisted for hundreds of years.
The second part of the book—also comprised of three chapters, of which I have given you the first—tells the story of what we argue is a deep shift in the legal meaning of war. It describes the end of the Old World Order and the beginning of something fundamentally new. This shift, we argue, has consequences not just for states’ recourse to war, but for international law and the international system as a whole.
The third part of the book will examine our modern international legal system and the ways in which international law can and cannot shape state behavior. This part of the book will draw on our article on “outcasting” as a mechanism for enforcing international law (Hathaway & Shapiro, Outcasting: The Enforcement of Domestic and International Law, Yale Law Journal (2012)).

Discussant: Ariel Colonomos (CNRS, Sciences Po), Christopher Kutz (Berkeley Univ.)

Mardi 25 Juin, 17.00-19.00
Salle Jean Monnet, Ceri

25 septNehal Bhuta (European University Institute, Florence), « Predicting disorder: ‘Early Warning’ and Indexes of State Failure » , Mercredi 28 Novembre 2012

Nehal Bhuta (EUI), Predicting disorder: « Early Warning » and Indexes of State Failure

The term “failed state” appears to have emerged in the early 1990s, and was used in reference to dramatic cases of state collapse, generally occasioned by severe internal conflict. After September 11, the security threats associated with state failure triggered an interest in understanding the correlates and preconditions for such situations. Attempts to develop measures of failure and fragility proliferated, and were sought out as « early warning » mechanisms which would allow governments to have some foreknowledge of risks of conflict and instability and so develop policy interventions. The ambition of these measures was to foresee crises of political order before they materialized and thus help forestall them, and to provide diagnostic tools to better address the « causes of instability. » This paper will examine the rise of interest in « early warning » mechanisms for state fragility, and one specific effort to quantify « state fragility » by the United States Agency for International Development.

Governance by Indicators’ book
Discussant: Didier Bigo (Sciences Po – King’s College)
Salle Jean Monnet : 17.00-19.00

24 novChristian Reus-Smit (European University Institute), « Struggles for Individual Rights: Global Change, Normative Implications », Lundi 12 Décembre (Lieu : Sciences Po, 13, rue de l’Université)

Christian Reus-Smit (EUI)

Struggles for individual rights played a key role in the globalization of the present system of sovereign states. From its original kernel in sixteenth century Europe, the system expanded through five great waves; the most significant were those associated with the Westphalian settlement, the independence of the Americas, and post-1945 decolonization. In each case , empires suffered crises of legitimacy as new ideas about rights were mobilized to challenge established regimes of entitlements. When empires proved incapable of accommodating the new rights claims, subject peoples embraced the sovereign state as the institutional alternative. This history challenges not only conventional understandings of the relation between individual rights and sovereignty, but also opens up new possibilities for the normative justification of human rights. This seminar sets out the historical and theoretical argument in greater detail, and sketches, in a very preliminary fashion, its implications for normative theory. Overall, it offers an example of how empirical and normative enquiry can be brought into productive dialogue.

Sciences Po, Salle du Conseil, 13, rue de l’Université, 17.00-19.00

Discussant: Richard Beardsworth (AUP)

17 décPierre Hazan (Sciences Po), « La paix contre la justice ? », Mardi 18 Janvier 2011

Pierre Hazan (Sciences Po)

De l’ex-Yougoslavie au Soudan, du Proche-Orient au Cambodge, la question de l’intervention de la justice internationale se pose désormais à chaque conflit, suscitant immanquablement de virulentes controverses. Deux thèses s’affrontent: les uns ne voient dans cette justice qu’une arme utilisée ou délaissée par les gouvernements selon leurs intérêts du moment; d’autres considèrent au contraire la lutte contre l’impunité comme le socle d’un Etat de droit et d’une société démocratique.
La justice est-elle un obstacle ou une condition à la paix? Est-elle indispensable pour reconstruire des sociétés et rétablir une paix durable? A travers des cas concrets (ex-Yougoslavie, Libéria, Soudan, Liban…), Pierre Hazan analyse les effets de cette nouvelle diplomatie judiciaire.

Président de séance : Pierre Hassner (CERI Sciences Po)
Discutant: Guillaume Devin (Sciences Po)
CERI 17.00 – 19.00

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17 décBenoît Pelopidas (MCNS), « The Nuclear Alternative and its Effects », Tuesday January 11th, 2011

The Nuclear Alternative and its Effects.
What It Takes to Read Nuclear History as an Alternative between Proliferation and Extended Deterrence

Benoît Pelopidas (James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies)

Within IR theory, the literature on deterrence, the one dealing with proliferation and finally the one dealing with disarmament are intuitively connected but this link is rarely stated clearly or explicitly. I posit here that “extended nuclear deterrence” is an interesting starting point to examine this nexus. Extended nuclear deterrence plays an important role in the narrative of the Cold War as nuclear peace. This paper will argue it is also a cornerstone of the narrative of nuclear history as proliferation history through what I label the “nuclear alternative” and will assess this alternative. The nuclear alternative can be stated as follows: either a protector provides a nuclear security guarantee to its ally/ies or it/they will get his/their own nuclear weapons. First, the paper will provide an assessment of extended deterrence as a non-proliferation tool based on comparative case studies, showing that it has neither been a necessary nor a sufficient condition for nonproliferation, which invalidates the notion of nuclear alternative. Second, using sociology of knowledge, it will analyze the “good reasons” (Boudon) to believe in such an alternative and debunks their implicit and faulty assumptions. The credibility problem emphasized in the literature on deterrence will therefore not appear as the only reason why the alternative is not valid. Third, the paper will expose the contemporary effects of such a view of history on the possibility of downsizing the US nuclear arsenal and on what is considered as proliferation.

CERI 5 – 7pm

Discussant: Richard Beardsworth

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30 novJack Snyder (Columbia University), « Religion and IR Theory », Tuesday November 2nd 2010

Jack Snyder (Columbia University)

Since September 11, 2001, religion has become a central topic in discussions about international politics. And yet the standard works of US international relations theory, which continue to shape much academic research, hardly mention religion. A handful of new works by young US international relations scholars have begun to fill this gap. The best of this new work is represented in Religion and International Relations Theory, edited by Jack Snyder, forthcoming from Columbia University Press in March 2011. Snyder’s overview of the project will focus on four approaches to integrating religion into theoretically-grounded international relations scholarship: (1) working within the traditional US paradigms of realism, liberalism, and social constructivism, (2) supplanting existing paradigms with a religion-centered theory, such as the “clash of civilizations” thesis, (3) analyzing secularisms as worldviews comparable to religions, and (4) treating religion as a variable in testable hypotheses about the causes of conflict international relations.

Discussant: Denis Lacorne (CERI)
CERI – Salle de conférences 5pm – 7pm

30 novErez Manela (Harvard University), “International Society as Historical Subject”, Tuesday June 2nd 2010

Erez Manela (Harvard University)

Scholars of international relations and law have been writing about international society for a while now, but historians, particularly in the United States, have been slow to adopt this term or wrestle with its implications. Though the field of international history has been experiencing a revival in the United States, with new work taking the field in exciting new directions, innovation has been coupled with disagreement and confusion about the changing shape of the field and its spatial, temporal, thematic, and methodological scope. This paper summarizes the debate about the state and direction of the field over the last several decades, outlines the state of the field today, and then attempts to show how reconceiving the field as the history of international society could help bring the numerous threads of recent developments into a coherent and common framework.

Karoline Postel-Vinay (CERI Sciences Po), Paul-André Rosental (Sciences Po-Centre d’Histoire)

Co-organized with Sciences Po Centre d’Histoire

CERI, salle du conseil 10.30 am – 12.30 pm