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1 J. Conflict Resol. 1 (1957)

handle is hein.journals/jcfltr1 and id is 1 raw text is: 













An editorial


  In these days when the Malthusian multi-
plication of reading matter threatens to en-
gulf the intellectual world, the progenitors
of a new journal should put forward some
excellent reasons for adding to what seems
like an overpopulated universe. We would
not, indeed, be so rash as to add to the
number of journals, did we not believe that
a niche exists in the present scene for a new
species, which might be named in Linnean
terms Interdisciplinaris internationalis. The
reasons which have led us into this enter-
prise may be summed up in two proposi-
tions. The first is that by far the most im-
portant practical problem facing the human
race today is that of international relations
-more specifically, the prevention of global
war. The second is that if intellectual prog-
ress is to be made in this area, the study of
international relations must be made an in-
terdisciplinary enterprise, drawing its dis-
course from all the social sciences, and even
further.
   Up to now the study of international re-
lations has, on the whole, been the preserve
of historians and political scientists and of
such professionals as lawyers, merchants,
diplomatists, and military men. We do not
wish in any way to depreciate the work
which has been done in these disciplines,
and our hope is to complement this work
rather than to compete with it, utilizing es-
pecially the ideas of sociologists, psycholo-


gists, educators, and pioneers of behavioral
science. Historical study is a basic raw ma-
terial for all the social sciences. There is no
substitute for painstaking research and doc-
umentary evidence or for the careful de-
scription of institutions and events. Spe-
cialized studies in international law, inter-
national economics, diplomacy, and military
affairs also are important for the practition-
ers and for the insight emerging from the
close contact of practitioners with events.
If we were satisfied with the present state
of knowledge, however, or even with pres-
ent methods of inquiry, there would be no
excuse for this journal. There are excellent
outlets for what might be called-without
prejudice-traditional work in this field.
There is no particular need to add to them,
nor can we claim any special competence
in this area. Our main concern is to stimu-
late a new approach, especially in the direc-
tion of the formulation and testing of the-
oretical models related to the central prob-
lem. We are interested also in the improve-
ment of the information processes in this
area through quantification, index numbers,
or any other means.
  Our belief in the fruitfulness of an inter-
disciplinary approach in this area is based
on the conviction that the behavior and in-
teractions of nations are not an isolated and
self-contained area of empirical material but
part of a much wider field of behavior and

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