In this talk, Professor Gary Goertz introduces a three-level framework for thinking about conceptualisation and measurement of complex concepts. The event is based on a re-writing of Gary's book Social Science Concepts: A User's Guide.
Complex concepts are multidimensional and multilevel. For example, so-called composite indicators or global performance indicators are extremely popular in the international community, in institutions like the European Union, the World Bank, and many NGOs.
While the multidimensional aspect is obvious, the multilevel aspect of them is not. The three schools of conceptualisation and measurement differ quite significantly on a number of core features such completeness, redundancy, and causation within the concept.
The framework for conceptualisation and measurement privileges the semantic, definitional aspects of conceptualisation. The talk uses various conceptualisations of poverty and wellbeing as core examples of three level framework as well as the various schools of conceptualisation.
Professor Gary Goertz is a scholar of international conflict, conflict management, and peace. He is the author or co-author of 10 books and more than 50 articles and chapters on international conflict and peace, institutions, norms, and methodology. His publications in this area include Contexts of International Politics (1994, Cambridge), Explaining War and Peace (2007) and, with Paul Diehl, Territorial Changes and International Conflict (1992) and War and Peace in International Rivalry (2000).