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Encyclopedia of Power

Encyclopedia of Power

Edited by:

July 2012 | 784 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Power is a central concept in many disciplines in the social sciences, including political science, sociology, social-psychology, organization studies, urban politics and planning. Where the term is less often used, such as in economics, it has been reduced to other concepts. Despite, or perhaps because of, its ubiquity, it has been analyzed in numerous and diverse ways in different discourse communities. This encyclopedia provides an authoritative and comprehensive coverage of the use of power in those different discourses, enabling the different language communities to learn from each other. It provides a compendium of the concepts that build the ways in which power is conceptualized and provides analyses of related concepts. It also provides a sourcebook for those interested in studying power and cross references the many insights that have been provided by theorists over the years.

There are various levels at which power has been used in the social sciences. Formal models of power use power indices, cooperative game theory, and non-cooperative game theory. Some of these definitions are very technical but here are explained clearly and simply. Other more diffuse accounts of power are defined, discussed, and analyzed and their implications for social research drawn out.

The nature of power has been debated conceptually, methodologically, and empirically at the personal, organizational, social, urban, national, and international levels. Those debates are discussed and appraised. Particular applications of power studies to, for example, the role of parties in coalition governments, the nature of prime ministerial versus presidential power, power in organizations, and within personal relations will all be covered. There are entries on individual theorists of power and their influence on the discipline. The encyclopedia will give a comprehensive coverage of the use of power in the social sciences.

The encyclopedia will provide a one-stop point of reference for the diverse and complex ways in which power has been used, as well as providing a reference for debates central to the issues of power in different contexts. It will also provide a point of reference for related topics and show how these are related to power.

"Setting out to make the prevailing theories of power accessible as they're discussed in disciplines like political science, business, and psychology, leading social sciences publisher SAGE is compiling what is likely to be a sought-after starting point int he research of power and its brokers."-Library Journal

Library Journal

"This set offers a distinctive interdisciplinary analysis of the concept of power and will prove a valuable addition for academic collections."

Samantha Schmehl Hines
University of Montana Library, Missoula
Library Journal

"As it stands now, it is a fine work and one I personally would love to own for desk-based research. The biographical entries (on active figures such as Dahl and Morriss and indeed Dowding himself) are objective and historiographically informative, the technical material (e.g. on game theory) is non-patronizing and authoritatively presented, the debates really are of current interest, the mix of soft with hard (or qualitative and quantitative) good, and the overall reach and level of analysis of the entries intellectually and professionally sound."

Stuart Hannabuss
Independent Reviewer and Researcher, Aberdeen, UK
Social Sciences

Keith Dowding

Keith Dowding is Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Political Philosophy, School of Politics and International Relations, Research School of Social Sciences, Australian National University. He published over ninety articles in major journals and more then fifty chapters in books, on comparative politics, public administration and public policy, philosophy and methods of political science and political philosophy and on various topics in political philosophy.  He has published over twenty books, most recently It’s the Government’s Fault, Stupid, (2020), a new edition of Rational Choice and Political Power (2019), Economic... More About Author

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ISBN: 9781412927482

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