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Great Powers, Great Perils: A Neorealist Analysis of the Impact of Multipolarity on the Risks of Confrontation, 1890-1911 and 2001-2009

Ingesson, Tony LU (2009) STVM11 20091
Department of Political Science
Abstract (Swedish)
This thesis departs from a neorealist theoretical perspective but adds a rational actor perspective based on game theory. It shares Waltz' assumption of deep anarchy and the need for states to ensure their security but also maintains that actor prospects may be able to cope with the structural incentives in a flexible manner. Two cases of international politics are studied; 1890-1911 and 2001-2009. It is then argued that the historical case can provide a basis for limited probabilistic generalization about the use of hard power in a modern multipolar setting using a methodological approach based on the concept of transferability. The underlying assumption is that the world may be headed for a multipolar world order and that some patterns... (More)
This thesis departs from a neorealist theoretical perspective but adds a rational actor perspective based on game theory. It shares Waltz' assumption of deep anarchy and the need for states to ensure their security but also maintains that actor prospects may be able to cope with the structural incentives in a flexible manner. Two cases of international politics are studied; 1890-1911 and 2001-2009. It is then argued that the historical case can provide a basis for limited probabilistic generalization about the use of hard power in a modern multipolar setting using a methodological approach based on the concept of transferability. The underlying assumption is that the world may be headed for a multipolar world order and that some patterns related to the use of hard power from 1890-1911 were being repeated in 2001-2009. The use of hard power manifests itself in two major ways; warfare and power projection. Multipolarity increases the number of actors that can use these instruments without implicit or explicit approval from another state. The differing actor prospects mean that some great powers are more likely to resort to hard power than others. (Less)
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author
Ingesson, Tony LU
supervisor
organization
course
STVM11 20091
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
neorealism, multipolarity, game theory, imperialism, power projection
language
English
id
1405294
date added to LUP
2009-06-23 09:26:06
date last changed
2009-06-23 09:26:06
@misc{1405294,
  abstract     = {This thesis departs from a neorealist theoretical perspective but adds a rational actor perspective based on game theory. It shares Waltz' assumption of deep anarchy and the need for states to ensure their security but also maintains that actor prospects may be able to cope with the structural incentives in a flexible manner. Two cases of international politics are studied; 1890-1911 and 2001-2009. It is then argued that the historical case can provide a basis for limited probabilistic generalization about the use of hard power in a modern multipolar setting using a methodological approach based on the concept of transferability. The underlying assumption is that the world may be headed for a multipolar world order and that some patterns related to the use of hard power from 1890-1911 were being repeated in 2001-2009. The use of hard power manifests itself in two major ways; warfare and power projection. Multipolarity increases the number of actors that can use these instruments without implicit or explicit approval from another state. The differing actor prospects mean that some great powers are more likely to resort to hard power than others.},
  author       = {Ingesson, Tony},
  keyword      = {neorealism,multipolarity,game theory,imperialism,power projection},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Great Powers, Great Perils: A Neorealist Analysis of the Impact of Multipolarity on the Risks of Confrontation, 1890-1911 and 2001-2009},
  year         = {2009},
}