Balancing vs Bandwagoning

Balancing vs Bandwagoning - Stephen M. Walt The Origins of...

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Stephen M. Walt The Origins of Alliances (1987) Examined whether balancing or bandwagoing was more prevalent Provided a theory of foreign policy, rather than a theory of international politics Provided an important refinement to neorealist theory: Balance-of-Threat Theory
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Balance-of-Power According to Waltz (1979), balance-of-power politics “prevail wherever two, and only two, requirements are met: that the order be anarchic and that it be populated by units wishing to survive” Anarchy + Survival Assumption = Balance of Power Politics Equilibrium (stability) between competing forces
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Balancing vs. Bandwagoning Two distinct hypotheses about how states will select their alliance partners: Balancing: Aligning with a weaker coalition to counter the influence or power of a stronger coalition Bandwagoning: Aligning with a stronger power or coalition Which form of behavior is more common?
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Balancing In an anarchical system, balancing, not bandwagoning, according to Waltz, will be the predominant form of behavior What are states supposed to be balancing? POWER Why should this be the case?
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Why Balancing? Place their survival at risk if they fail to curb a potential hegemon To join with those who cannot readily dominate their allies, in order to avoid being dominated by those who can (for example, U.S. rapprochement with China in 1970s) Joining the weaker side increases the new members’ influence with the alliance
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The Costs of Bandwagoning What kind of risks does bandwagoning entail? Bandwagoning means placing yourself at the mercy of the
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This note was uploaded on 10/04/2011 for the course INTL 3200 taught by Professor Wilson during the Fall '08 term at University of Georgia Athens.

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Balancing vs Bandwagoning - Stephen M. Walt The Origins of...

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