Writing Armageddon

Writing Armageddon
Furious writing or writing furiously?

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Trump administration and Intestate Managerial Coordination among the major powers

The Trump administration and Intestate Managerial Coordination among the major powers

By Konstantinos Travlos

Abstract "The Trump Presidency may see further degeneration of the weakened managerial coordination among major powers." 

My main subject of research is the causes and consequences of state participation in managerial coordination regimes. In my dissertation and my most recent published work, I explored interstate managerial coordination among the major powers. Using the scale of interstate managerial coordination (IMaC) I tracked the quality of IMaC among major powers over the 1715-2010 period.  Managerial coordination is an important factor in international politics partly because it gives us snapshot of relations between the states participating in it, and partly because low coordination likely fosters militarized conflict in international politics, while high coordination likely dampens it.

These relationships are probabilistic, not deterministic (in another name, the presence or absence of managerial coordination is not always going to lead to the presence or absence of military conflict), thus it would be wrong to assume that low coordination will lead to major power conflict. However, my studies have found that the fostering and inhibiting influence does have empirical traction (reality does on average behave as expected to behave).

One of the main conditions that is associated with lower managerial coordination is what Peter Wallensteen calls “particularism”. “Particularism” is when major powers pursue their interests in total indifference to the interests of other states, or of the robustness of the regimes of the international system. On the other hand, when the major powers are “universalist” they tend to pursue their interests in ways that maximize the possible support by other states and with due consideration to the regimes that make up the international system.

Figure 1

Monday, February 6, 2017

Student Risk of War Analysis: US-Iran

As part of my IR 315: Peace and Conflict Course I had students conduct a Risk of War analysis of a dangerous dyad according to the Simple Risk Barometer developed in Steps to War by Paul Senese and John A. Vasquez. In this series I will upload to the blog the ones I felt were the best. The goal is to show that with some training anyone can use Steps to War to get a handle on current events and the likelihood of war. 

United States of America-Iran
Derya Saygili

US-Iran relations were tense especially since the Iranian Revolution. This dyad seems to be worrisome due to the concerns over the nuclear proliferation of Iran by US. And since the Syrian War broke out, the stance of US and Iran in that matter is opposite. All these events could be worrisome, but it does not necessarily mean a war between this dyad is of high chance. We can explain this by looking at simple risk barometer for war and can further explain the context of what has been happening between the two states on recent issues. 

Student Risk of War Analysis:Colombia-Venezuela

As part of my IR 315: Peace and Conflict Course I had students conduct a Risk of War analysis of a dangerous dyad according to the Simple Risk Barometer developed in Steps to War by Paul Senese and John A. Vasquez. In this series I will upload to the blog the ones I felt were the best. The goal is to show that with some training anyone can use Steps to War to get a handle on current events and the likelihood of war. 

Colombia-Venezuela

Sena Uzun


Latin America has experienced many problems that have generated from border migration-drug issues and smuggling throughout the history. Among the ongoing rivalries are the source of continuing tension and raises the possibility of militarized border disputes. There have been numerous MIDs those occurred in the region, on average more than once a year throughout the twentieth century. Nonetheless, these MIDs rarely rose to the level of war, occurring only 2.5% of the time. This paper focuses on the risk of a possible war between two Latin American states: Colombia and Venezuela. The two countries share a border of over 2,219 kilometres- contiguity is an important factor in this dyad that should be kept in mind.

I will use Steps to War frame by Senese-Vasquez to analyse the level of bellicosity of Colombia- Venezuela dyad. Senese-Vasquez developed the Risk of War Barometer which offers a prediction of the risk of war regarding four basic steps to war: (1) presence of territorial disputes, (2) the presence of outside allies, (3) the repetition of MIDs and (4) an ongoing arms race. Any combination of these factors is counted as increasing the risk of war.

Student Risk of War Analysis: Turkey-Republic of Cyprus

As part of my IR 315: Peace and Conflict Course I had students conduct a Risk of War analysis of a dangerous dyad according to the Simple Risk Barometer developed in Steps to War by Paul Senese and John A. Vasquez. In this series I will upload to the blog the ones I felt were the best. The goal is to show that with some training anyone can use Steps to War to get a handle on current events and the likelihood of war. 
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Turkey-Republic of Cyprus
by Eyl├╝l Ozcan

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when a coup d’etat inspired by the Greek locals of the island prompted a Turkish military intervention and occupation of the northern part of the island. The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus was declared in 1983, and has only been recognized by Turkey. Turkey has been demanding that TRNC be recognized since then. Since the division by the “green line” the Turks and Greeks have been living separately and have been patrolled by the United Nations. With the accession of Southern side of the island to the European Union on 2004, the parameters of the conflict have been changed. 





Friday, January 27, 2017

Book Reaction "The Habsburg Empire: A New History"

Finished Pieter M.Judson’s “The Habsburg Empire: A New History”



This is a great and meaty book, which I devoured, all 543 pages, including 100 pages of notes. It is more similar to Christopher Clack’s “Iron Kingdom” (another great book), rather than a chronological annal of the history of the Habsburg Empire. It’s central theme was the relationship between the imperial authorities and its peoples, and the ways those peoples tried to articulate stakes on the empire and from the empire. It is a story of the rise of nationalism, but of its rise as a top-down political ideology who struggled to co-opt the imperial state to impose a specific nationalist-statist ideology on peoples who primary identity was localist. It is a great book of politics, showing the empire trying to react to the changes brought by the industrial revolution and the mass politics that continue. It is finally a book that dispenses with the myth propagated by nationalist-statists about the inevitability of their favored systems of nationalism-statism, the unitary nation state. The Empire was not doomed to die. Its death was the result of conscious political choices by both imperialists and nationalist-statists, and by a war of choice.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Contributor Publication: K.Travlos "From Universalism to Managerial Coordination: Major Power Regulation of the Use of Force"

My newest publication “From Universalism to Managerial Coordination: Major Power Regulation of the Use of Force” has been published in Volume 17, Issue 2 of  the Asian International Studies Review.

This is an important point in my oldest research project, the study of interstate regulatory regimes in the international system. In my dissertation I began by exploring the consequences of what I termed major power managerial coordination. The idea from this study came from my exposure to the work of Paul Schroeder on the transformation of European politics, that of Peter Wallensteen on universalism and particularism , and the Steps to War theoretical framework.  

Sunday, January 1, 2017

2017. A New Year that demands of us an affirmation of Hope

Disclaimer: This post is a post of political propaganda (some call them activism). I am not speaking in my capacity as an academic or ex-cathedra. What I write he is worth no more and no less than the opinion of any other person alive right now. I am also very bad at writing and at orthography. I have provided an audio version of the post, for those who would prefer that. This is quite euro-centric. I am unavoidably of European descend . Make of it what you will.

2017. A New Year that demands of us an affirmation of Hope
By Konstantinos Travlos

Abstract: The coming year will be a hard one. Already it has begun with dis-heartening events in Istanbul. But we must not lose hope. We must, per Hamlet “make mouths at the invisible event”, affirming our humanity and seeking to positively influence our own, and others, life.

Already 2017 has seen the first terrorist attack in Istanbul. Many of my US friends enter the new year dis-heartened by the prospect of a Trump Presidency. My Greek friends do show their customary bon-vivant not letting the gloom of 2016 cast it shadows on 2017 for them.  It is tempting to be dis-heartened. All of our educated guesses point to 2017 being a less than stellar year. But it is a mistake to attribute to a concept, the year, the actions of humans. And because it is not years, but humans who do things, it is imperative for us to be hopeful.

Audio Version