In weakly institutionalized environments like the international system or countries where the rule of law is weak political actors – be they opposing factions or states – can use force or the threat of it to further their interests. Recent years have seen an explosion of work in political science on the causes of war and still more recently on civil war and the politics of weakly institutionalized environments in both economics and political science. This course begins with a survey of the formal work in political science on the causes and conduct of war and then branches out to include selected topics in the political economy of wealy instituitionalized environments. PS232B is a sequel to PS232A. Students are expected to have some background in game theory (e.g., PS232A or Econ201).