Power Notes

Types of Counterpower: Idea Counterpower Economic Counterpower Physical Counterpower Bargaining games: ultimatum game: powerful person offers ultimatum and the subject would have to a...

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Types of Counterpower:

  • Idea Counterpower
  • Economic Counterpower
  • Physical Counterpower

Bargaining games:

  • ultimatum game: powerful person offers ultimatum and the subject would have to accept that offer or else both the proposer and the recipient will receive no reward
  • dictator game: powerful person offers a proposal and the recipient would have to accept that offer. the recipient has no choice of rejecting the offer.

Controlling subjects:

  • psychological abuse
  • physical abuse
  • goal is to control and intimidate the subject or to influence them to feel that they dont have an equal voice in the relationship


  • intermittent/partial reinforcement

Other things:

  • Shape the environment for policy
  • Soft power is affected by non state actors in and outside the country. they affect both the general public and governing elites in other countries and create an enabling or disabling environment for govt policies
  • associated with globalization and neoliberal international relations theory
  • create a cyber advocacy organization and put pressure on governments. recruit member and project their voice on the global stage
  • create, develop, and promote empire culture
  • exercise downward power
  • disruptive contagion or ripple effect
  • revolutionary coalition
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power
  • put order to a chaotic system
  • economic incentives or military strength
  • power: population, territory, natural resources, economic and military strength

Social power:

  • social influence = target of influence + influencing agent
  • change the belief of the target of influence

Legitimate power:
3 bases of legitimate power:

  • cultural values
  • acceptance of social structure
  • designation

Legitimate powers:

  • legitimate position power
  • legitimate power of reciprocity
  • legitimate power of equity
  • legitimate power of dependence

Referent power:

  • Rooted in the affiliations we make and/or the groups and orgs we belong to
  • Positive referent: utilizes shared personal connection or shared belief between the influencing agent and target with the intention of positively correlated actions of the target
  • Negative referent
  • Based on charisma and interpersonal skills
  • Nationalism and patriotism are examples of intangible referent powers

Expert power:

  • Based on what one knows, experience, and special skills or talents
  • Expertise can be demonstrated by reputation, credentials certifying expertise, and actions
  • Positive expert
  • Negative expert

Informational power:

  • Influence agent provides a baseline of information to a target of influence to lay the groundwork in order to be effective with future persuasion
  • Information has been used by some to extort action, utterance, agreement, or settlement by others
  • Providing rational arguments, using information to persuade others, using facts and manipulating information can create a power base
  • Direct informational power: information presented by the influencing agent directly to the target of change
  • Indirect informational power: info presented influencing agent indirectly to the target of change void of attempting influence, such as hints or suggestions
  • Socially independent of change
  • Accessibility
  • Tools/mechanisms: possessing information, obtaining relevant information in a timely way to amass a power base. informational power as a base is derived by determining the usefulness and appropriateness of the information

power by proxy or invoking the power of third parties may be used to reinforce or supplement other power bases by using a third party to invoke change in a target of influence

instructive power – the chance to determine the actions and thoughts of another person

destructive power – the chance to diminish the opportunities of another person

Hard power:

  • economic incentives or military strength
  • power: population, territory, natural resources, economic and military strength

International politics:

  • offer economic incentives or force to ngos
  • offer economic incentives or force to international institutions

Empire immortality:

  • population size: buy companies, hire people
  • build and develop military assets
  • develop maximum money system

Power notes:

  • power vacuums
  • destroy your enemy’s source of power
  • bigger dangers

What is Soft Power?

  • Shape preferences of others through appeal and attraction.
  • Change and influence opinion through relatively less transparent channels.
  • Lobby through powerful organizations.

Strengthen your power currencies:

  • Culture [in places where it is attractive to others]
  • Political values [when it lives up to them anywhere they are]
  • Foreign policies [when others see them as legitimate and having moral authority]


  • democracy
  • human rights
  • individual opportunities [deeply seductive]

Different demographics are attracted or repelled by different:

  • things
  • ideas
  • images
  • prospects

Civilian instruments:

  • national security
  • diplomacy
  • strategic communications
  • foreign assistance
  • civic action
  • economic reconstruction and development

Soft power factors:

  • quality of political institutions
  • extent of cultural appeal
  • strength of diplomatic network
  • reputation of education system
  • attractiveness of economic model
  • country’s digital engagement with the world

Sources of soft power:

  • pop culture
  • mass media
  • normative structures
  • international news

Soft power extends beyond the operations of government:

  • to the activities of the private sector
  • to society
  • and culture at large

Trigger normative obligations:

  • reciprocity
  • equity
  • responsibility

Rational choice framework:

  • outcome power – the ability of an actor to bring about or help bring about outcomes
  • social power – the ability of an actor to change the incentive structures of other actors in order to bring about outcomes

Sharp gene condition:

  • power depends ultimately on its bases
  • a political regime maintains power because people accept and obey its dictates, laws and policies

Loyal fool evolution:

  • compliance
  • identification
  • internalization

Non-state entities that are relevant in power acquisition:

  • multilateral international organizations
  • military alliance organizations: nato
  • multinational corporations like walmart
  • ngos like roman catholic church
  • other institutions like hanseatic league

power tactics

  • bully
  • collaborate
  • complain
  • criticize
  • demand
  • disengage
  • evade
  • humor
  • inspire
  • manipulate
  • negotiate
  • socialize
  • supplicate