Tag Archives: Domestic Order

Discussion Three: Domestic vs. International Order

5 Dec

In this discussion, we explore the similarities and differences between domestic and international orders.  We generally agree that there are similarities between the two spheres and that we can apply lessons learned from how we achieve order domestically to the international sphere.  We compare the bipolar order that existed between the US and USSR during the Cold War with the two-party system of American domestic politics.  Ultimately, we are trying to see what relevant lessons and strategies can be applied from the arrangement that existed between the two powers during the Cold War to the American domestic sphere or vice-versa.

Click here to listen to our third roundtable discussion.

To access the readings discussed in this podcast, click here.

Our discussion follows the following outline:

Background of the Cold War Order

  1. Two distinct orders emerged between the great powers
  2. US and USSR: bipolar order
  3. US and Western Europe: multilateral

Cold War Order and American Domestic Politics

  1. US and USSR: bipolar order, strong ideological split, difficult to compromise on many issues as interests are inherently and ideologically opposed
  2. American domestic politics: two-party system, difficult to compromise on certain “key” issues, prone to strong ideological splits along party lines
  3. Western European domestic politics: generally multi-party systems, necessitate the formation of governing coalitions

Discussion Two: Theories of International Order

4 Dec

In this roundtable, we develop our own theories of international order.  With these theories, we attempt to answer the questions we began exploring in our first discussion: what is international order and how does it arise?  These theories will, in part, be used to frame our later discussions of the Cold War and post-Cold War orders.

Click here to listen to our second roundtable discussion.

To access the readings discussed in this podcast, click here.

Some of the salient points to emerge from this discussion of our theories are the differences between what we consider to be the primary unit of analysis and the applicability of various theories of international politics across the security and trade spheres.

  • Primary unit of analysis: Will and Vince see the sovereign state as the primary actor in the international system, whereas Erin and Christian allow for a more robust consideration of non-state actors.
  • Logics determining state behavior: theories of international politics that appear to apply well to the security sphere do not appear to apply as well to the trade and monetary sphere.  Erin argues that a segmentation of theory by issue area is necessary to gain a more complete understanding of international order.