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  • Author: Domhnall O'Sullivan
  • Publication Date: 06-2014
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Geneva Centre for Security Policy
  • Abstract: The first concerns the fundamental methodological logic of the policy instruments underpinning EU action in its neighbourhood. Historically, a certain duality has existed between the multilateral regionalism of grand approaches towards the south and the bilateral realism which often comes to the fore. According to institutional dynamics and preferences – as well as vacillating local conditions – the EU has moved back and forth along this continuum.
  • Topic: International Relations
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, North Africa
  • Author: Sven Biscop
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: EGMONT - The Royal Institute for International Relations
  • Abstract: European foreign policy: the words do not conjure up any grand images. In the absence of any real ambition, there are neither triumphs to celebrate nor disasters to mourn. There is only gentle irrelevance to contemplate. Such is the image of Europe as an international player today in the minds of those who make and study foreign policy and strategy, in our own as well as in foreign capitals. Gentle irrelevance, for Europe proclaims to wish the world well and is generous enough with its money to prove it. And it presents no cause for fear, only for irritation, in some corners, with its inconvenient insistence on universal values. But irrelevance nonetheless, for Europe lacks the unity and sense of purpose for resolute and sustained action to uphold these values, and continues to liberally spend its money quite regardless of values or effect. Increasingly irrelevant even, for in the wake of the financial crisis Europe struggles to maintain its own social model, which undermines the legitimacy of its value-based narrative and erodes the will as well as the me ans for external action.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Democratization, Power Politics, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Isabelle Francois
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: The past twenty years have been marked by a series of setbacks and disappointments in the US-European-Russian dialogue, despite regular attempts to develop a strategic partnership. In this cyclical relationship, 2012 was a low point in Western relations with Russia, from the calculated absence of President Vladimir Putin at the NATO summit in Chicago to the Russian ban on American adoptions of Russian orphans, and the US reaction to the Sergei Magnitsky case. The year 2013 could have been the beginning of an upswing in the trilateral dialogue. In April, US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met on the margins of the G8 foreign ministers' gathering in London. At the same time, US National Security Advisor Tom Donilon called on Putin in Moscow, where he hand-delivered a letter from President Barack Obama detailing potential areas of cooperation. A series of meetings between Russian and American officials throughout the summer saw a new diplomatic push to reframe the US–Russia relationship in the run-up to the Group of Eight meeting in June and the G20 meeting in September 2013. However, the Edward Snowden affair and Obama's subsequent decision to cancel the planned September meeting with Putin in light of insufficient progress on bilateral issues point to a pause in the relationship.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, America, Europe
  • Author: Michito Tsuruoka
  • Publication Date: 04-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: Japan and NATO are now partners on the international security scene, but they used to live in different worlds with little interaction between the two. The Cold War, as seen from Washington and Moscow, was undoubtedly a global conflict. Yet, in many respects, it was still regional in nature: United States allies in Europe and Asia faced different sets of threats and challenges which, more often than not, evolved separately. It is, therefore, hardly surprising that relations between Japan and NATO did not develop during the Cold War, though both were US allies, sharing fundamental values and facing the Soviet Union as a common threat. Indeed, during the Cold War period NATO as an alliance had no substantial relationships with non-members, nor did it see the need for partnerships. This was largely because there was no reason for it to seek external help in achieving its core mission of defending the Allies.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, NATO, International Cooperation, International Security
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Europe, Washington, Asia, Moscow
  • Author: Luk Van Lagenhove
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The academic study of regional integration is scattered amongst different disciplines. Political scientists have a longstanding interest in regional integration but historians, economists, lawyers, and international relations scholars have been studying regional integration as well. Often a comparative perspective is taken. Hence the development of “Comparative Regional Integration Studies” as an institutionalized academic activity aimed at performing scientifically sound comparisons of regional integration processes across the globe and across time. But as Alberta Sbragia rightly noted, the study of comparative regionalism is ill-defined and “its boundaries are certainly permeable.” There is indeed a lot of confusion about the study-object of the field. Take for instance Ernst Haas's classic definition of regional integration: “the study of regional integration is concerned with explaining how and why states cease to be wholly sovereign, how and why they voluntarily mingle, merge, and mix with their neighbours so as to lose the factual attributes of sovereignty while acquiring new techniques for resolving conflict between themselves.” Here the emphasis is on losing sovereignty. But is this the case for all forms of regional integration? What if the “integration” is organized on a purely inter-governmental basis? Furthermore, both the concepts of “integration” and “region” are problematic. Integration has a normative connotation as it is often implicitly regarded as a positive development (in contrast to the negative connotation of disintegration) and region is a polysemous concept that can refer to supranational, subnational, or cross-border areas. It is therefore not always clear what the unit or object of comparison is. And on top of that, regional integration in Europe seems to obscure the field as scholars disagree on what place the EU should take in comparative regional integration studies. In recent years, many authors have pointed to these conceptual and other methodological problems. This article argues that comparing different forms of regional integration is scientifically feasible, but only if a social constructivist point of view is taken. Only in this way can a general theory be developed that allows understanding of the diversity of integration processes. It also claims that it is policy-relevant to compare the European integration experiences with regional integration in the rest of the world.
  • Topic: International Relations
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Mohammad Javad Bakhtiari, Fariba Hossein Nia Salimi
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Iranian Review of Foreign Affairs
  • Institution: Center for Strategic Research
  • Abstract: The article tries to examine Britain's place in EU's policymaking towards Iran. Having in mind the importance of the EU in international stages and also in economic and political matters, the following article has shed light on the ups and downs of Iran's relations with the UK as one of the important EU-nation states and has concluded that an effective but careful and logical relationship with EU member states could expand the space of more collaborations and in this regard Iran can utilize EU's capacities. Britain in contrary to the US has avoided military tools and has chosen a negotiating policy toward Iran and has assured other member states of these negotiations. Iran should choose a definite strategy towards EU based on having a complete knowledge of each member – state and their capabilities and special potentials in cooperation with Iran.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Economics
  • Political Geography: Britain, United States, United Kingdom, Europe, Iran
  • Author: Zdeněk Ludvík
  • Publication Date: 06-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Obrana a strategie (Defence Strategy)
  • Institution: University of Defence
  • Abstract: The realm of privatization of security and the consequent existence of private military companies is an important constitutive element of security with regard to international relations. This phenomenon is most strongly developed in the Anglo-Saxon world. However, in the case of the French Republic, we can observe significant developmental and functional disparities. This paper examines externalization processes in the context of the French approach to the legitimacy, legality and territoriality of the privatization of security functions of the state and explains the different causes of their development. It discusses the main aspects of externalization, defines the typical activities of French private military companies, describes their strengths and weaknesses and outlines the problems and possible solutions that lie before the French, which cannot be ignored in the future. Finally, this paper describes the most important French private military companies and their characteristics.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, NATO, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Europe, Iran, Middle East, Asia, France, Arabia
  • Author: Einar Wigen, Iver B Neumann
  • Publication Date: 07-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of International Relations and Development
  • Institution: Central and East European International Studies Association
  • Abstract: This article is a call for making the Eurasian steppe an object of study within International Relations. The first section argues that the neglect of the steppe is due to 19th-century prejudice against non-sedentary polities as being barbarian. This is hardly a scholarly reason to neglect them. The second section is a nutshell overview of literature on the steppe from other fields. On the strength of these literatures, we postulate the existence of what we call an almost three thousand year long steppe tradition of ordering politics. The third section of the article suggests that the steppe tradition has hybridised sundry polity-building projects, from early polity-building in the European the Middle Ages via the Ottoman and Russian empires to contemporary Central Asian state-building. We conclude this exploratory piece by speculating whether a focus on the steppe tradition may have the potential to change our accounts of the emergence of European international relations at large.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Central Asia, Eurasia
  • Author: Dinesh H.C. Rempling, Quentin Huxham
  • Publication Date: 06-2013
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: EGMONT - The Royal Institute for International Relations
  • Abstract: At his regular press briefing on 6 May 2013, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, dramatically threw down the gauntlet to Europe's leaders ahead of this December's European Council. Emphasising the need for improved cooperation and coordination between NATO and the EU, he called on Europe's leaders to ensure that, as a result of the first discussion about European security since the financial crisis at the European Council in December, Europe would be both willing and able to act in the interests of transatlantic security.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Defense Policy, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Europe, Lisbon
  • Author: Bülent Aras
  • Publication Date: 04-2013
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Strategic Research (SAM)
  • Abstract: Both the EU’s recognition of the importance of its value system and Turkey’s rediscovery of its European component in its foreign policy identity have occurred during a period of radical transformation in the Mediterranean region. The Arab Spring has resulted in a process of renegotiation over territory, identity and governance which has eventually fostered the idea of a new regional political community. The EU is in an advantageous position now if it truly wants to build a political community eastwards and southwards. One logical move would be a renegotiation in the EU over Turkey’s role in a new vision for the future of the EU. Turkey’s European identity and policy style will continue to shape its own neighbourhood policy as it is at the centre of a new geopolitical thinking. Ankara sees itself as having an order-instituting role in its changing neighbourhood and is in a process of recalibrating its policies in this direction. The Turkish and EU models complement each other, and there is no possibility for any other model to compete with these perspectives in the foreseeable
  • Topic: International Relations, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey