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date: 18 October 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter extends poliheuristic theory to the analysis of leaders’ decisions in strategic interactions and offers a framework for the conduct of both ex-ante and ex-post analyses of such decisions. Using the case study of the United States and Russia with regard to the decision to dismantle Syria’s chemical arsenal in September 2013, the authors show that the leaders’ decision followed a two-step poliheuristic process consisting of 1) eliminating alternatives dissatisfactory on non-compensatory dimensions and 2) obtaining equilibrium for the reduced choice sets through a game-theoretic strategic interaction. The chapter also discusses and uses a new method of decision analysis, applied decision analysis.

Keywords: poliheuristic theory, US foreign policy, Russian foreign policy, strategic interaction, decision science, Syria, chemical weapon

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