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Party CompetitionAn Agent-Based Model$
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Michael Laver and Ernest Sergenti

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691139036

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691139036.001.0001

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In Conclusion

In Conclusion

(p.258) Chapter Twelve In Conclusion
Party Competition

Michael Laver

Ernest Sergenti

Princeton University Press

This concluding chapter summarizes key themes and presents some final thoughts. This book started with the twin premises that understanding multiparty competition is a core concern for everyone interested in representative democracy and that multiparty competition should be understood as an evolving dynamic system, not a stationary state. Given these premises, it investigated the dynamics of multiparty competition using computational agent-based modeling, a new technology that is ideally suited to providing systematic answers to the types of question we want to ask. This allows the modeling of decision making by party leaders, in what is clearly an analytically intractable setting, in terms of the informal rules of thumb that might be used by real human beings, rather than the formally provable best response strategies used by traditional formal theorists. Whether people use the dynamic model of multiparty competition or some better model of this vital but complex political process, there is no doubt that the computational approach deployed in this book offers vast potential to ask and answer interesting and important questions.

Keywords:   multiparty competition, dynamic system, agent-based modeling, political parties, party competition, party leaders

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