The basic methodology of the RC approach is equilibrium analysis, and the concept of equilibrium plays a fundamental role in models of everything from legislatures to diplomatic relations, voting and revolutions. Curiously, equilibrium analysis has not received the attention it deserves, despite the fact that almost every other aspect of the RC approach has been under attack. When the RC approach is criticized for its reliance on equilibrium analysis, it is usually in connection with institutional analysis, as we saw in Chapter 5. However, within economics, equilibrium analysis has drawn a lot more attention, and for more reasons, some of which are as relevant for an evaluation of the RC approach as of economics. In this chapter I will discuss the methodology of equilibrium analysis and relate it to what the RC approach can and cannot do. If there are factors that limit the approach, equilibrium analysis — because of its absolutely fundamental role in modelling — will probably be one of them.
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