The SAGE Handbook of Research Methods in Political Science and International Relations offers a comprehensive overview of research processes in social science - from the ideation and design of research projects, through the construction of theoretical arguments, to conceptualization, measurement, and data collection, and quantitative and qualitative empirical analysis - exposited through 65 major new contributions from leading international methodologists. Each chapter surveys, builds upon, and extends the modern state of the art in its area. Following through its six-part organization, undergraduate and graduate students, researchers and practicing academics will be guided through the design, methods, and analysis of issues in Political Science and International Relations: Part One: Formulating Good Research Questions and Designing Good Research Projects; Part Two: Methods of Theoretical Argumentation; Part Three: Conceptualization and Measurement; Part Four: Large-Scale Data Collection and Representation Methods; Part Five: Quantitative-Empirical Methods; Part Six: Qualitative and Mixed Methods.
Chapter 4: Evidence-Driven Computational Modeling1
Computational modeling is a powerful, versatile tool for the analysis of complex social phenomena. Historically, scholars used computational modeling to investigate abstract causal relationships in artificial settings, highlighting simple but counter-intuitive dynamics. Seminal examples include work by Thomas Schelling on the drivers of segregation (Schelling, 1971), Robert Axelrod on the evolution of cooperation (Axelrod, 1984), Joshua Epstein and Robert Axtell on artificial societies (Epstein and Axtell, 1996), and Palmer et al. on artificial stock markets (Palmer et al., 1999). These early applications influenced subsequent research, including notable studies on the formation and dissolution of nation-states after the end of the Cold War ...