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  • 1.
    Doeser, Fredrik
    et al.
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Division of Strategy.
    Eidenfalk, Joakim
    University of Wollongong, Australien.
    Ignoring public opinion: The Australian and Polish decisions to go to war in Iraq2016In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 29, no 2, p. 562-580Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article investigates why the governments of Australia and Poland decided to contribute military forces to the United States led invasion of Iraq in March 2003 when a majority of Australian and Polish citizens were opposed to national involvement in the invasion. The objective of the article is to increase understanding of the conditions under which governments ignore the public in their foreign policymaking. The article examines the explanatory power of four intervening variables: issue salience, elite debate, timing of the next election and the importance assigned to international gains by the government. On the basis of the Direct Method of Agreement, the article concludes that government perceptions of international gains and the timing of the next election were potentially necessary factors for the outcomes of the cases, while issue salience and elite debate were not necessary conditions. A distant election may, thus, provide sufficient electoral protection for a government that conducts a foreign policy to which the public is opposed.

  • 2.
    Hagström, Linus
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Political Science Section.
    Hanssen, Ulv
    Soka University.
    Long live pacifism!: narrative power and Japan’spacifist model2019In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 32, no 4, p. 502-520Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    International relations research acknowledges that states can have different security policies but neglects the fact that ‘models’ may exist in the security policy realm. This article suggests that it is useful to think about models, which it argues can become examples for emulation or be undermined through narrative power. It illustrates the argument by analysing Japan’s pacifism—an alternative approach to security policy which failed to become an internationally popular model and, despite serving the country well for many years, has even lost its appeal in Japan. Conventional explanations suggest that Japan’s pacifist policies were ‘abnormal’, and that the Japanese eventually realized this. By contrast, this article argues that narratives undermined Japan’s pacifism by mobilizing deep-seated beliefs about what is realistic and unrealistic in international politics, and launches a counter-narrative that could help make pacifism a more credible model in world politics.

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  • 3.
    Hagström, Linus
    et al.
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Political Science Section, Sektionen för säkerhet.
    Gustafsson, Karl
    Department of Economic History and International Relations, Stockholm University, Sweden.
    Narrative power: how storytelling shapes East Asian international politics2019In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 32, no 4, p. 387-406Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We are living at a time when people appear to have become more aware of the power of narratives in international politics. Understanding how narratives exercise power is therefore more pertinent than ever. This special issue develops the concept of narrative power for international relations research by focusing on East Asia—the region that has been at the centre of debates about international power shifts since the 1990s. This introduction seeks to elucidate and define four key binary distinctions: (a) narrative power as understood from the perspective of an individualist versus a narrative ontology; (b) narrative power as explanandum versus explanans; (c) narrative power as more prone to continuity or change; and (d) the scholar as a detached observer of narrative power versus the scholar as a narrative entrepreneur and a potential wielder of power. Informed by the individual contributions, the introduction demonstrates how and with what implications research on narrative power can negotiate and traverse these binary distinctions.

  • 4.
    Hammargård, Kajsa
    et al.
    Department of Economic History, Stockholm University, Sweden.
    Olsson, Eva-Karin
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Political Science Section, Sektionen för krishantering och internationell samverkan.
    Explaining the European commission's strategies in times of crisis2019In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 32, no 2, p. 159-177Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Despite the growing debate over the European Commission’s (hereafter, Commission) role in crises, there are few systematic explanations for the variety of actions undertaken by the Commission in times of crisis. This article outlines a heuristic device to explain the Commission’s actions during crises, based on the variables ‘Commission mandate’ and ‘member state engagement’. To this end, it examines two crisis events that affected two strategically important policy areas for European Union integration: the early stages of the financial crisis that began in 2008 and the migration following the 2011 Arab Spring. Based on analysis of these cases, this study identifies four strategies applied by the Commission: doer, follower, cooperator and recycler. Our study concludes that member state engagement and Commission mandate are important variables in explaining under which circumstances these strategies are used by the Commission

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  • 5.
    Hollis, Simon
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Political Science Section.
    The global standardization of regional disaster risk management2014In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 27, no 2, p. 319-338Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Natural disasters have become a heightened security issue in the last decade. Mitigating and responding to disasters, such as the 2004 tsunami in Southeast Asia and the 2011 earthquake in Japan, reflect a new security agenda that has spread across the globe and infiltrated most regional organizations. At first glance, the creation of regional programmes on disaster risk management (DRM) appears to be driven by the functional preferences of states. However, a comparison of ten regional organizations reveals some curious ambiguities. Despite different threat perceptions, financial budgets and geographical environments of regional organizations, a majority of states have formed DRM programmes that exhibit highly standardized features in terms of language, the referent points of protection and the apparent motivations for cooperation. World society theory is used to explain these striking similarities with reference to the global cultural system. This article also illustrates the analytical purchase of world society theory in understanding cooperation through regional organizations.

  • 6.
    Holmqvist, Caroline
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Strategiavdelningen med folkrättscentrum (upphört). Centre for International Studies, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK.
    War, 'strategic communication' and the violence of non-recognition2013In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 26, no 4, p. 631-650Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Contemporary Western war-fighting is animated by the fictitious imagination of a war free from antagonism. In this logic, winning wars is about winning the ‘hearts and minds’ of local populations, about persuasion rather than confrontation. In recent years, the concept of ‘strategic communication’ (SC) has been elevated to the top echelons of strategic thinking in United States military circles, focusing attention on how to communicate ‘effectively’ with local populations. Via an analysis of the concept of SC, this article examines the ethico-political dimensions of contemporary Western-led ‘population-centric’ war. Through a reading inspired by Judith Butler's recent work in Precarious life (London: Verso 2006) andFrames of war (London: Verso 2009), and an analysis that turns on the link between ethics and ontology, I reflect on the significance of the ‘communications turn’ in warfare for our study of war in ontological terms.

  • 7.
    Turner, Oliver
    et al.
    University of Edinburgh, UK.
    Nymalm, Nicola
    Swedish Institute of International Affairs, Stockholm.
    Morality and Progress: IR narratives on international revisionism and the status quo2019In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 32, no 4, p. 407-428Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Scholars debate the ambitions and policies of today’s ‘rising powers’ and the extent to which they are revising or upholding the international status quo. While elements of the relevant literature provide valuable insight, this article argues that the concepts of revisionism and the status quo within mainstream International Relations (IR) have always constituted deeply rooted, autobiographical narratives of a traditionally Western-dominated discipline. As ‘ordering narratives’ of morality and progress, they constrain and organize debate so that revisionism is typically conceived not merely as disruption, but as disruption from the non-West amidst a fundamentally moral Western order that represents civilizational progress. This often makes them inherently problematic and unreliable descriptors of the actors and behaviours they are designed to explain. After exploring the formations and development of these concepts throughout the IR tradition, the analysis is directed towards narratives around the contemporary ‘rise’ of China. Both scholarly and wider political narratives typically tell the story of revisionist challenges China presents to a US/Western-led status quo, promoting unduly binary divisions between the West and non-West, and tensions and suspicions in the international realm. The aim must be to develop a new language and logic that recognize the contingent, autobiographical nature of ‘revisionist’ and ‘status quo’ actors and behaviours.

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  • 8.
    Öberg, Dan
    Swedish Defence University, Department of Military Studies, Tactical Warfare Division, Air Operations Section.
    War, transparency and control: the military architecture of operational warfare2016In: Cambridge Review of International Affairs, ISSN 0955-7571, E-ISSN 1474-449X, Vol. 29, no 3, p. 1132-1149Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In contemporary research, transparency is commonly understood to indicate and guarantee openness, in ways that make it synonymous with positive characteristics of governing. However, the allegedly benevolent link between transparency and governing has also been questioned, giving rise to arguments that transparency enables violent social control. Drawing upon this latter view, the article stages an encounter between critical debates on transparency and critical accounts of war to examine the way that they come together in the operationalization of warfare. Engaging particularly with Jean Baudrillard’s writing on transparency, the article inquires into the way control is socially manufactured and administered through military doctrines. It concludes that the operationalization of warfare is not, as many tend to argue, first and foremost about a response to practical problems when conducting wars. Rather, it consists of the potential to unveil global space and global time as an attempt to maintain and control future political becoming

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