Regions, Powers And Order: A Structural Approach To Regional Politics
International Relations Theory
Balance of Power
AdvisorVolgy, Thomas J.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractIn this dissertation I develop a theory that seeks to account for the variation in stability and conflict proneness we observe across regions. I propose that the observed variation in regional order in the international system is fundamentally rooted in the polar arrangements of the different regions. Specifically, I argue that regions that do not have clearly recognized regional powers are more prone to conflict, that their conflicts are more severe, and that these regions are more vulnerable to outside influence than those that do have such powers. Using an opportunity and willingness framework, I define regions as stable geographic spaces of interacting states behaving uniquely from the broader international system. In order to test these propositions, I make use of novel data defining both regional memberships and that identifies leading regional actors. The results show that not only do regional polarity have a strong explanatory effect, but they also suggest that it is necessary to take regional-level effects into account when analyzing international politics.
Degree ProgramGraduate College