Lakatos and neorealism: A reply to Vasquez

Colin Elman, Miriam Fendius Elman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


We disagree that our correspondence (Elman and Elman 1995) regarding Schroeder (1994) supports Vasquez's (1997) verdict that the neorealist scientific research program is degenerating. We argue that Vasquez's conclusion is based on a misstatement of the Lakatosian criteria of appraisal and a mistaken conflation of the neorealist research program with the proposition that balancing is a common foreign policy. We do, however, welcome Vasquez's attempt to apply Lakatosian metatheory to international relations theory, and we hope that this conversation will encourage others to follow his lead.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)923-926
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Political Science Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


Dive into the research topics of 'Lakatos and neorealism: A reply to Vasquez'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this