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Politics in Time
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Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables ix Acknowledgments xi Introduction: Placing Politics in Time 1 Chapter One Positive Feedback and Path Dependence 17 Chapter Two Timing and Sequence 54 Chapter Three Long-Term Processes 79 Chapter Four The Limits of Institutional Design 103 Chapter Five Institutional Development 133 Conclusion Temporal Context in Social Science Inquiry 167 Bibliography 179 Index 195

Promotional Information

Every once in a long while a book comes along that shifts the debate entirely by altering the vantage point from which we approach the study of politics. This is such a book. Maneuvering masterfully across diverse literatures and drawing on an extraordinary range of empirical cases, Pierson identifies key mechanisms that give meaning and precision to the abstract claim that history matters. Through analysis and illustration, he provides new insights into exactly how, when, and why this is true. This is an enormously important and agenda-setting work. -- Kathleen Thelen, Northwestern University Paul Pierson is a leading voice in new social science debates on temporality and path dependence. He has now taken a major step forward by unifying his arguments in an integrated statement. This book will be indispensable for scholars across several disciplines who are concerned with comparative-historical analysis, innovative perspectives on causal assessment, and integrative approaches that bridge qualitative and quantitative methods. -- -David Collier, University of California, Berkeley Politics in Time is a splendid book that will shape debates in political science and beyond for many years to come. It represents the most systematic and thorough statement on theorizing temporal processes in the social sciences ever written. Pierson sets new agendas by challenging researchers to take time seriously, especially those who work in analytic traditions that traditionally have been relatively atemporal. -- James Mahoney, Brown University, author of "The Legacies of Liberalism"

About the Author

Paul Pierson is Harold Hitchings Burbank Professor of Political Economy at Harvard University. He is the author of numerous books, including "Dismantling the Welfare State?" which won the Gladys Kammerer Award in 1995 from the American Political Science Association for the best book on American national politics and policy.

Reviews

"Maneuvering masterfully across diverse literatures and drawing on an extraordinary range of empirical cases, Pierson identifies key mechanisms that give meaning and precision to the often invoked but abstract claim that history matters. Through analysis and illustration, he provides new insights into exactly how, when, and why this is true. This is an enormously important and agenda-setting work." - Kathleen Thelen, Northwestern University; "Politics in Time is a splendid book that will shape debates in political science and beyond for many years to come. It represents the most systematic and thorough statement on theorizing temporal processes in the social sciences ever written. Pierson sets new agendas by challenging researchers to take time seriously, especially those who work in analytic traditions that traditionally have been relatively atemporal." - James Mahoney, Brown University, author of The Legacies of Liberalism"

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