Domestic Constraints And The Breakdown Of International Agreements

Domestic Constraints And The Breakdown Of International Agreements

by Jeffrey S. Lantis
     
 

This book explores how elite commitments to cooperate with international organizations can be supplanted by domestic political constraints. It contends that the most popular explanation for defections from international commitments in the foreign policy analysis literature, the two-level game model presented by Robert Putnam, does not fully account for surprising

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Overview

This book explores how elite commitments to cooperate with international organizations can be supplanted by domestic political constraints. It contends that the most popular explanation for defections from international commitments in the foreign policy analysis literature, the two-level game model presented by Robert Putnam, does not fully account for surprising defections from agreements. A new framework is presented which interprets international defections as the product of domestic constraints on foreign policy-making that often materialize in the post-commitment ratification process, the period when domestic conditions and actors align relative to an international agreement.

To explore the dynamics of post-commitment politics, eight cases studies of the foreign policy decision-making process in the Federal Republic of Germany relative to commitments to the European Community and NATO in the 1970s and 1980s are presented. A comparative analysis of the cases demonstrates the importance of modifying the two-level game model to account for the sequential and complex nature of the ratification process in the post-commitment phase. The study concludes that factionalism in the major party government and inter-party coalition differences are primary, but often hidden, constraints on a leader's ability to uphold international agreements, and it shows how international commitments can awaken dormant domestic constituencies along the road to ratification. This is a work of great significance to scholars and researchers in the areas of foreign policy analysis, international organizations, and German politics.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
In revisiting Putnam's two-level game theory of international negotiations, Lantis (political science, College of Wooster) focuses on the post-commitment politics phase--i.e., the precarious interim between a leader's negotiation of a commitment with international counterparts and foreign policy ratification to allocate government resources to sustain the commitment. He posits five key domestic consensus-building conditions influencing the viability of a cooperation agreement: major party unity, ruling coalition consensus, issue area, election performance, and public support, and puts the hypothesis to the test via case studies of German foreign policy behavior toward NATO and European Community agreements in the 1970s and 1980s. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780275959487
Publisher:
ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date:
10/30/1997
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)
Lexile:
1710L (what's this?)

Meet the Author

JEFFREY S. LANTIS is Chair of the International Relations Program and Assistant Professor of Political Science at The College of Wooster. He was Associate Editor for The Brassey's Mershon American Defense Annual, 1995-1996, and he has written extensively on German and American foreign policy and the use of simulations in the international relations classroom.

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