The Duck of Minerva

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New Duck of Minerva Working Paper: “I CAN HAS IR THEORY?”

January 8, 2013

There’s been significant interest in Steve Saideman’s criticisms of Mearsheimer’s and Walt’s working paper, “Leaving Theory Behind: Why Hypothesis Testing Has Become Bad for IR.” Indeed, there are many comments in a discussion that harkens back to older posts at the Duck. Given this, it strikes me as appropriate to add PTJ’s and my paper (PDF)–solicited for the same special issue as Mearsheimer’s and Walt’s–to the Duck of Minerva Working Papers series.

Our take is a bit different. If you’ve heard our podcast (m4a/mp3) on the subject, what we have to say will sound pretty familiar. For slides on the subject, see here and here.

Anyway, let us know what you think.



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Daniel H. Nexon is a Professor at Georgetown University, with a joint appointment in the Department of Government and the School of Foreign Service. His academic work focuses on international-relations theory, power politics, empires and hegemony, and international order. He has also written on the relationship between popular culture and world politics.