Leaders and foreign policy decision-making

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemChapter

6 Scopus citations


This chapter explores one way of classifying decision units. Of particular interest are the circumstances under which one type of decision unit takes responsibility for making the choice regarding how to deal with a foreign policy problem and the effect of the nature of the decision unit on the substance of the action selected. The chapter discusses how the single, powerful leader can shape a government's foreign policy behavior when he or she bears ultimate responsibility for making a decision. It is based on several assumptions about foreign policy making and decision units. The chapter also explores theories relevant to individuals and argue for a particular key control variable in differentiating among types of predominant leaders. It describes that part of the decision units model dealing with single, powerful leaders. The chapter proposes a framework for understanding how predominant leaders can shape foreign policy decisions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDiplomacy, Force, and Leadership
Subtitle of host publicationEssays in Honor of Alexander L. George
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9780429699948
ISBN (Print)0813317452, 9780367007676
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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