You can for the sake of argument and analysis divide most governments in four categories based on Contestation (C) and Inclusion (I). High C / High I, High C/ Low I, Low C/ High I, Low C/Low I. From this can further analyse with respect to:
- How the power is distributed
- Role of the state
- Nature of conflict
- Whose interests prevails
- Basis of power
The other topic up for debate was Rationality. Now this interests me, I've been reading up on rationality in decision-making for modeling purposes. The two we explored were Incrementalism (Partisan Mutual Adjustment?) and Bounded Rationality.
I'm really interested in Bounded Rationality and how people cannot considered more than a certain amount of information, important when asking decision-makers to pick based on multiple criteria or systems with multiple implications.
If by this point you're wondering when I became a social science convert I can quite adamantly profess to this being my only foray into the world of qualitative, mumble-jumble in which there are few wrong answers...I'll even take statistics equations over this world.
- Charles Lindblom (1950), “The Science of Muddling Through”, Public Administration Review, (19), Spring 1950, pp.79-88.
- Robert Dahl (1971), Polyarchy: Participation and Opposition, Yale University Press, Yale., Chapter 1: “Democratisation and Public Opposition”