Political Science | Empirical Theory & Methods
Y673 | 15799 | Ostrom

This class meets at 513 N. Park

During the fall semester of this year-long course, we provide a
brief overview of the literature focusing on the analysis of
individual behavior within various types of institutional
arrangements.  Many topics covered here in one week could well be
the topic for a full semesterís work.  Once you have completed the
semester, you will have been introduced to a diversity of questions
and approaches, but you will not yet have gained full mastery and
will need substantial additional study to gain that mastery.  For
some subjects, we list additional readings that you may wish to
pursue either during this semester on those topics of particular
interest and importance to you or over the coming years.

The syllabus for this yearís course will be uploaded to Oncourse a
week or so before classes begin.  Previous syllabi for this course
are available for viewing and download at:
http://www.indiana.edu/~workshop/courses/Y673/pastsyllabi.php.  The
assigned readings will be uploaded to Oncourse at least one week in
advance of the class they are assigned or be available at the IU
Bookstore for purchase.  Graduate students taking the course for
credit have three types of assignments.  First, each student is
expected to write a short (2-3 pages) memo to the instructor and
other members of the class every other week reflecting on what they
are currently reading, how they are progressing on their seminar
paper, and related topics.  These memos are not individually
graded.  Part of the final grade will be based on class
participation.  The faithfulness and quality of the memos will be
reflected in this part of the grade.

Second, there will be an exam given toward the end of the semester.
Third, a final paper is required.  Each student will be expected to
select either a type of problem (such as that of providing a
particular type of public good or common-pool resource) or a type of
decision-making arrangement (such as that of a legislature, a market
structure or a common-property regime).  The student will then
undertake a micro-analysis of how combinations of rules, the
structure of the goods and technology involved, and culture interact
to affect the incentives facing individuals and resulting patterns
of interactions adopted by individuals in one or a set of closely
related situations.  The student may focus more on an operational, a
collective-choice or a constitutional-choice level, but the linkage
among these levels should be addressed.  This is an excellent
opportunity to do a research design for a dissertation that applies
institutional analysis to a particular problem.  Students may wish
to do the first draft of a paper that eventually will be submitted
for publication.  All papers will be presented at a Mini-Conference
on December 13 and 14, 2010.