Hawkish Biases and the Interdisciplinary Study of Conflict Decision-Making

  • Jonathan RenshonEmail author
  • Daniel Kahneman


Psychological biases strongly affect foreign policy decision-making. The authors argue that the biases recently uncovered by psychological research favor hawkish decisions in conflict situations. By “hawkish,” they refer to a propensity for suspicion, hostility and aggression in the conduct of conflict, and for less cooperation and trust when the resolution of a conflict is on the agenda. While much extant work examines links between cognitive biases and conflict, they offer a new and developed formulation based on the excellent insight of Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman in the field of psychology and Jonathan Renshon’s knowledge of IR and conflict.


International Relation Cognitive Bias Prospect Theory Loss Aversion International Politics 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyPrinceton UniversityPrinceton, NJUSA

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