The issues which arose during the discussions of the conference fall fairly conveniently into three compartments.
First, we obviously had to settle, with reasonable clarity, what we were talking about: what “political philosophy” is, what “political science” is, and whether they are really distinguishable. The basic issue of the conference was to determine the relevance of the one to the study of the other, and if we had decided that they were really the same thing, there would simply have been no problems for us to discuss. On the whole, we felt that a valid, if not necessarily sharp, distinction was to be made between the “philosophical” and the “scientific” approaches to the study of politics and that we were not discussing absurd or tautological issues. We agreed, however, that all types of political inquiry involve the construction of theory, implicit or explicit, and that the title “political theory” has been unjustifiably appropriated by the historians of political thought.