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10 February 2014

IB Global Politics play Classical Realism

Year 1 students began their study of nuclear proliferation by playing Victor Asal's game, Classical Realism. Students are challenged to secure their own survival in an anarchic environment by keeping or winning playing cards at the expense of their colleagues. Round 1 culminated with four students-two adopting a defensive Realist and two adopting offensive Realist strategies-essentially reaching relative balance of power and were unwilling to pursue further actions in the game. Changing the rules for Round 2, students became less risk-averse as each dyadic interaction was no longer zero-sum. After two rounds of play, our debriefing addressed concepts as diverse as balance of power, bandwagoning (interesting on these last two terms, as I have not assigned a Walt article to them yet.) different meanings of power, perception, and interdependence....just to name a few.