3 Jul 2014

Edited Book: "The Complexity of Social Norms"

The Complexity of Social Norms

Editors: Maria Xenitidou, and Bruce Edmonds 

Other Authors: Elinor Ostrom, Wesley Perkins, Cristina Bicchieri, Rosaria Conte,  Marco Janssen,  Flaminio Squazzoni Christine Horne, Brigitte Burgemeestre, Hugo Mercier, Chris Goldspink, Corinna Elsenbroich, Joris Hulstijn, Yao-Hua Tan, Giulia Andrighetto, and Daniel Villatoro

ISBN: 978-3-319-05307-3 (Print) 978-3-319-05308-0 (Online)
  • Takes a fresh, fundamentally dynamic and complexity inspired approach to the study of social norms
  • Presents a new methodological and theoretical perspective to study normative behavior
  • Contributing authors provide a unique and varied perspective from departments such as philosophy, economics and political science
This book explores the view that normative behaviour is part of a complex of social mechanisms, processes and narratives that are constantly shifting. From this perspective, norms are not a kind of self-contained social object or fact, but rather an interplay of many things that we label as norms when we ‘take a snapshot’ of them at a particular instant. Further, this book pursues the hypothesis that considering the dynamic aspects of these phenomena sheds new light on them.

The sort of issues that this perspective opens to exploration include:

  • Of what is this complex we call a "social norm" composed of?
  • How do new social norms emerge and what kind of circumstances might facilitate such an appearance?
  • How context-specific are the norms and patterns of normative behaviour that arise?
  • How do the cognitive and the social aspects of norms interact over time?
  • How do expectations, beliefs and individual rationality interact with social norm complexes to effect behaviour?
  • How does our social embeddedness relate to social constraint upon behaviour?
  • How might the socio-cognitive complexes that we call norms be usefully researched?

Table of contents (11 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-vi
  2. No Access
    Book Chapter
    Pages 1-8
  3. The Complex Roots of Social Norms

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 9-9
    2. Book Chapter
      Pages 11-36
    3. Book Chapter
      Pages 37-54
    4. Book Chapter
      Pages 55-79
    5. Book Chapter
      Pages 81-103
    6. Book Chapter
      Pages 105-120
  4. Methods and Epistemological Implications of Social Norm Complexity

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 121-121
    2. Book Chapter
      Pages 123-139
    3. Book Chapter
      Pages 141-160
    4. Book Chapter
      Pages 161-173
  5. Evaluating Complex Approaches to Norms

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 175-175
    2. Book Chapter
      Pages 177-188
    3. Book Chapter
      Pages 189-197
  6. Back Matter

    Pages 199-205