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Structure and Agent System: Interstate Interaction

Interstate interaction
Organizing Structure
Cooperation and conflict
Power, threat levels
Aid flows
Key Aggregate  Relationships 
(illustrative, not comprehensive)
Changes in power, relative power, threat, action-reaction
Key Agent-Class Behavior  Relationships
(illustrative, not comprehensive)
Spending on military, aid

As with the domestic socio-political environment, and unlike the use of cohort-component structures in demographics and of markets and social accounting matrices for economics, there is no completely standard organizing structure that is widely used for representing interstate/international systems. Yet the representation of power-based interaction systems, including interactions related to relative power and to action-reaction dynamics, is common. IFs builds significantly on that conceptual and theoretical base.

Among the most important understandings of students of interstate/international interaction is that conflict and cooperation are not really opposites in relationships. Although the balance of conflict and cooperation will vary within and across relationships, Intensity of interaction often brings both.