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Title:From warmongers to peacebuilders: major power managerial coordination and the transformation of international relations, 1715-2001
Author(s):Travlos, Konstantinos
Director of Research:Vasquez, John A.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Vasquez, John A.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Diehl, Paul F.; Dai, Xinyuan; Bowers, Jake; Wallensteen, Peter
Department / Program:Political Science
Discipline:Political Science
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):international relations
major powers
militarized interstate disputes
international system
managerial coordination
Abstract:This project is an evaluation of the role major power managerial coordination played in the transformation of the international system from a war-inducing to a peace-inducing system. In pursuit of this goal I develop the concept of the regime of major power managerial coordination and argue that it was a novel innovation in late-18th century great power politics which greatly transformed conflict dynamics in international relations since 1816. Major power managerial coordination is the engagement of the major powers in consultation, multilateralism and the avoidance of adversarial coordination. The goal is to decrease the likelihood of major power military conflicts. Because minor power conflicts can bring in major powers by diffusion, the major powers engaged in managerial coordination also strive to decrease the likelihood of the use of military force by all states in the international system. Major Powers engage in managerial coordination because their ruling elites became wary of war as an instrument of foreign policy due to fear of the consequences of great power war for their domestic political position. Beginning from the argument developed by Paul Schroeder that the Napoleonic wars were the first instance in which the majority of major powers suffered adverse results for domestic power structures, I develop an explanatory story of how the major powers engaged in managerial coordination decrease the likelihood of military conflict onset. This is via three mechanisms. One is denial, the denial of major power diplomatic and military support for the use of military force by other states. The second is discouragement, the threat of major power intervention and censure that may lead states to avoid the use of military force in order to resolve disputes. Finally, the pacification of international relations by major power managerial coordination may indirectly facilitate peace-fostering developments such as democratic reforms within states, and the creation of international organizations. It is thus that the transformation of international politics was brought about. To evaluate the transformation thesis, I develop the scale of major power managerial coordination intensity, a novel replicable instrument that captures how intensely the major powers are engaged in managerial coordination. To permit the comparison of pre-transformation and post-transformation conflict onset dynamics I compiled a new dataset of militarized interstate disputes in the 1715-1815 period. This complements the extant datasets on the 1816-2001 period. I then conducted quantitative evaluations of a number of hypotheses extracted from the explanatory story I presented. The findings supported the arguments that managerial coordination was a novel innovation for late 18th and early 19th century international relations. The findings also indicate that increasing managerial coordination decreases the likelihood that two states would experience a military conflict in the 1816-2001 periods. Furthermore this is more likely to be due to denial rather than discouragement mechanisms. Finally, there were indicators that increasing managerial coordination fosters democratic reforms within states, but that it does not make states more likely to join international organizations. These findings will be of interest to those studying the evolution of the international political system, those studying how structural phenomena influence the behavior of states, scholars researching the impact of the Vienna System in the form international relations have today, and scholars engaged in research on conditions that help alleviate the issue of the use of military force in international relations.
Issue Date:2014-01-16
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Konstantinos Travlos
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-01-16
Date Deposited:2013-12

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