Resnick 1 [Evan Resnick, Journal of International Affairs, 0022197X, Spring 2001, Vol. 54, Issue 2, “Defining Engagement”]
In matters of national security, establishing a clear definition of terms is a precondition for effective policymaking. Decisionmakers who invoke critical terms in an erratic, ad hoc fashion risk alienating their constituencies. They also risk exacerbating misperceptions and hostility among those the policies target. Scholarswho commit the same error undercut their ability to conduct valuableempirical research. Hence, if scholars and policymakers fail rigorously to define "engagement," they undermine the ability to build an effective foreign policy.