Toward the End of Inter-Paradigm Debates : Theoretical Synthesis of Grand Unified Model

Shunji Kosaka
Dissatisfied with the current state of the discipline of international relations to provide a solution for the prolonged inter-paradigm debates, this study seeks to merge theories to form a unified comprehensive theoretical framework, Grand Unified Model (GUM), through theory synthesis of existing paradigms. Selectively utilizing theoretical constructs embedded in contending research traditions, theory synthesis is expected to provide a persuasive solution. Specifically, this study develops
more » ... study develops main arguments as follows. First, a critical review of the three major research traditions, namely, neorealism, neoliberalism and constructivism is conducted to indicate that there are certain meta-theoretical deficiencies which undermine the results of those researches on the drastic transformation of the international environment. Then, by synthesizing modified assumptions of research traditions, a basic framework of GUM is constructed as a grand theoretical model. GUM is expected to be a comprehensive explanation of global phenomena set forth not in the state-centric but in the individual human-centric manner, contributing to theoretical improvement with regard to decision-making assumption, unit of analysis and epistemology. In light of the increasingly untenable nature of the traditional approaches, this study aims to demonstrate that theory synthesis has a potential to bring an end to the inter-paradigm debates.
doi:10.18910/65095 fatcat:gkjvos5p35baflqmvb2sdyuwsu