Department of Political Science

PSC 580 Models of Non-Democratic Politics

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Old Political Science Field: Comparative PoliticsPositive Theory

Jack Paine
Fall 2017 — T 12:30-15:25

This course will study game theoretic models that address core themes in comparative politics, focusing on non-democratic settings. Substantive questions include: How do authoritarian rulers maintain power? Why do countries democratize? How do states monopolize violence and prevent civil wars? The goal of the course is to understand the mechanics of important models from the literature as well as the broader research agendas to which these models contribute. This goal will enable students to identify cutting edge research questions in these literatures. The only requirement is completion of the first-year formal theory sequence or an acceptable alternative. Grading will be based primarily on problem sets and a final paper.


Spring 2009

Course Syllabus

This course reviews recent advances in nondemocratic politics and the political economy of developing countries. We will tackle such issues as the economic foundations of democratic transitions and the economic impact of power struggles in dictatorships. The course combines the use of formal models with case studies and econometrics.