Over the last thirty years, regression analysis has established itself as the workhorse of quantitative approaches to International Relations. The reasons why regression analysis has become central to quantitative analysis in International Relations are easy to understand: regression analysis is simple and powerful. Despite the many discoveries in International Relations made possible by regression analysis, however, regression analysis also has plenty of detractors that point out its pitfalls and problems. This chapter reviews the practices of regression analysis in applied research in International Relations: it assesses the potential contributions of regression analysis to description, to inference, and to causal analysis. It concludes that regression analysis may continue to be central to applied research in International Relations, as long as the practitioners of regression analysis don't lose sight of the definition: regression analysis is a technique to synthesize information which measures the mean and variance of the conditional distribution.
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