PREVIOUS ARTICLE ALL CONTENTS Next ARTICLE

The Governance Cycle in Parliamentary Democracies: A Computational Social Science Approach, Scott de Marchi and Michael Laver

Reviewed by Xiao Lu
 

Many great advances in social science would not have been possible without combining substantive inquiries with methodological advancements. This encouraging approach continues with the publication of de Marchi and Laver’s book. In their enlightening work, the authors tackle the task of explaining and predicting government formation from a computational perspective. In a high-dimensional policy space, as they convincingly argue, decision-makers adopt a functional logic, guided by heuristics, through trial and error. In that light, the canonical formal models, equipped with simplified deductive reasoning and fully strategic calculation, are sometimes insufficient for capturing the reality of coalition governance in parliamentary democracies.

By developing computational models covering all major stages of coalition governance, de Marchi and Laver seek to advance our understanding of the surprisingly stable nature of government formation and factors that may lead to its vanishment. The first chapter of the book puts front and center the concept of the governance cycle, which involves three interconnected processes of election, government formation, and government survival. Because of the complexity of the processes, the authors contend that politicians are only “functionally” rational in the sense that they use heuristics rather than perfect form

To continue reading, see options above.

About PSQ's Editor

ROBERT Y. SHAPIRO

Full Access

Join the Academy of Political Science and automatically receive Political Science Quarterly.

CONFERENCES & EVENTS

A Purple Agenda For The Next Four Years
June 20, 2024
7:30 p.m.–9:00 p.m. ET
WEBINAR

MORE ABOUT THIS EVENT VIEW ALL EVENTS

Editor’s spotlight

Virtual Issue

Introduction: Black Power and the Civil Rights Agendas of Charles V. Hamilton
Marylena Mantas and Robert Y. Shapiro

MORE ABOUT THIS TOPIC

Search the Archives

Publishing since 1886, PSQ is the most widely read and accessible scholarly journal with distinguished contributors such as: Lisa Anderson, Robert A. Dahl, Samuel P. Huntington, Robert Jervis, Joseph S. Nye, Jr., Theda Skocpol, Woodrow Wilson

view additional issues

Most read

Articles | Book reviews

Understanding the Bush Doctrine
Robert Jervis

The Study of Administration
Woodrow Wilson

Notes on Roosevelt's "Quarantine" Speech
Dorothy Borg

view all

New APS Book

China in a World of Great Power Competition   CHINA IN A WORLD OF GREAT POWER COMPETITION

About US

Academy of Political Science

The Academy of Political Science, promotes objective, scholarly analyses of political, social, and economic issues. Through its conferences and publications APS provides analysis and insight into both domestic and foreign policy issues.

Political Science Quarterly

With neither an ideological nor a partisan bias, PSQ looks at facts and analyzes data objectively to help readers understand what is really going on in national and world affairs.

Stay Connected

newsstand locator
About APS