Robert O.

Keohane (1941-)
Stanford University

Joseph S. Nye, Jr. (1937-)
Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University

By: MAGNO, Gerald T. IS 290

PART I: UNDERSTANDING INTERDEPENDENCE Chapter 1 Interdependence in World Politics Chapter 2 Realism and Complex Interdependence Chapter 3 Explaining International Regime Change PART II: REGIME CHANGE IN OCEANS AND MONEY Chapter 4 The Politics of Ocean and Money: Historical Overview Chapter 5 Complex Interdependence in Oceans and Money Chapter 6 The Politics of Rule-Making in Oceans and Money PART III: REGIMES AND TWO-BILATERAL RELATIONSHIPS Chapter 7 United States with Canada and Australia PART IV: THE UNITED STATES AND COMPLEX INTERDEPENDENCE Chapter 8 Coping with Interdependence

´The traditional agenda of international affairs ² balance among major powers, the security of nations ² no longer define our perils or our possibilities« Now we are entering a new era. Old international patterns are crumbling; old slogans are uninstructive; old solutions are unavailing. The world has become interdependent in economics, in communications, in human aspirations.µ -Henry Kissinger, 1975 € Two major questions that were address by the authors in the book:

What are the major pictures of world politics when interdependence, particularly economic interdependence is extensive? ƒ How and why do international regimes change?


Dependence means a state of being determined or significantly determined by external forces. Interdependence, most simply defined, means mutual dependence. Interdependence in world politics refers to situations characterized by reciprocal effects among countries or among actors in different countries. Where there are reciprocal (although not necessarily symmetrical) costly effects of transactions, there is interdependence. Where transactions do not have significant costly effects, there is simply interconnectedness. The distinction is vital if we are to understand the politics of interdependence.


Leading Foreign owners of US Treasury Securities (May 2010) Nation PR China Japan United Kingdo Brazil billions of dollars 867.7 786.7 percentage 21.9 19.8 8.8 4.1 3.7 3.2 3.2 100

Hong Kong SAR Russia Taiwan Grand Total

Country United States People·s Rep. of China Philippines


350.0 161.4 145.7 126.8 126.2 3963.6

Top 3 Trading Partners (2010) Canada, China, Mexico US, Japan, Hong Kong USA, Japan, China

€ Power

and Interdependence

Power can be thought of as the ability of an actor to get others to do something they otherwise would not do (and at an acceptable cost to the actor). Sensitivity involves degrees of responsiveness within a policy framework. It is created by interactions within a framework of policies. The vulnerability dimension of interdependence rests on the relative availability and costliness of the alternatives that various actors face.



€ International

Regime Change

International regime refer to the set of governing arrangements that affect relationships of interdependence among actors in IR. Changes in international regimes are important.



In this chapter, the authors constructed another ideal type of theory, the opposite of realism. They called it complex interdependence. Keohane and Nye argues that complex interdependence sometimes comes closer to reality than does realism. In complex interdependence, the theorists recognized that the various and complex transnational connections and interdependencies between states and societies were increasing, while the use of military force and power balancing are decreasing but remain important.


Realism Goal of actors Military security will be the dominant goal. Military force will be most effective, although economic and other instruments will also be used. Potential shifts in the balance of power and security threats will set the agenda in high politics and will strongly influence other agendas. Linkages will result differences in outcomes among issue areas and reinforce int l hierarchy. Roles are minor, limited by state power and the importance of military force. Complex Interdependence Goals of state will vary by issue area. (Oceans, Money, Security, etc.) Power resources specific to issue areas will be most relevant.

Instruments of State policies

Agenda formation

Agenda will be affected by changes in the distribution of power resources within issue areas. Linkages by strong states will be more difficult to make since force will be ineffective. Organizations will set agendas, induce coalition-formation, and act as arenas for political action by weak states

Linkages of issues

Role of Int l Organizations


Multiple channels connect societies, including: informal ties between governmental elites as well as formal foreign office arrangements; informal ties among non-governmental elites and transnational organizations. The absence of hierarchy of issues which means, among other things, that military security does not consistently dominate the agenda. Military force is not used of by governments toward other governments within the region, or on the issues, when complex interdependence prevails. (Non-use of military force)



In this chapter, to be able to explain why do international regimes change, the theorists presented four models based respectively on changes in:
1. 2. 3. 4.

Economic processes; The overall power structure in the world; The power structure within issue areas; and Power capabilities as affected by international organizations.

€ Economic

Process Explanation

A model of regime change based on economic processes would begin with this century·s many technological and economic changes. 1. Technological change and increases in economic interdependence will make existing international regimes obsolete. 2. Governments will be highly responsive to domestic political demands for a rising standard of living. . The aggregate economic benefits provided by international movements of capital, goods, and in some cases labour will give governments strong incentive to modify or reconstruct international regimes to restore their effectiveness.

€ Overall

power structure explanation

The basic dynamic is provided by the assertion that as the power of states changes (that is, as the structure changes), the rule that comprise international regimes will change accordingly.

€ Issue


Has a similar form of argument about regime change: the strong states (in an issue area) will make the rules. A basic assumption of the issue structure model, however, may be tempted to draw linkages among issues, such linkages will be generally unsuccessful. Main premise: Power resources in one issue area lose some or all of their effectiveness when applied to others.

€ An

International Organization Model

Distribution of capabilities (overall or within issue areas) among the major actors of world politics. Refer to multilevel linkages, norms, and institutions between governments. In this sense, international organization is another type of world political structure. This model assumes that a set of networks, norms, and institutions, once established, will be difficult either to eradicate or drastically to rearrange.



In this chapter, the authors provide historical overview of the oceans and money issue areas. They claimed that the Pax Britannica of the 19th century (181 -191 ) is sometimes seen as the golden age of international order. International economic interdependence was governed by regimes that were largely established and enforce by the Great Britain.


This chapter provides an investigation on the extent to which political processes in each issue area correspond to the ideal type of complex interdependence, and whether such an approximation has changed over time. In the first half of the chapter, the theorists discussed how well oceans and monetary politics have conformed to the three conditions of complex interdependence. In the second half, they asked how well their expectations about the politics of complex interdependence fit patterns of behaviour in oceans and monetary politics.

€ In

this chapter, Keohane and Nye provided an analysis on how the politics of rule-making in issue areas (money and oceans) affected by regime change by using the four explanatory models presented in Chapter .

€ In

this chapter, the authors depart from using global economic issues to prove the reality of interdependence. Instead, they used a different direction by comparing the relationships between countries. In this case, they chose Canadian-American relations and Australian-American relations. Both countries have been the America·s staunchest allies since the end of second world war.

The theorists· analysis pointed out two major policy problems: international leadership and organization. € Their analysis implies that more attention should be paid to the effect of government policies on international regimes. € Concern with maintenance and development of international regimes leads us to pay more attention to problems of leadership in world politics. € Focus on contemporary world leadership stimulates increased attention to problems of international organization.

TRENDS TOWARD COMPLEX INTERDEPENDENCE € So long as complex interdependence does not encompass all issue areas and relationships among all major states, the remaining role of military force will require sovereign states to maintain military capabilities.
€ So

long as the world is characterized by enormous inequality of incomes among states ² a condition that cannot be change quickly even on the optimistic assumptions about economic growth ² citizens are likely to resist dismantling of national sovereignty.

LEADERSHIP IN COMPLEX INTERDEPENDENCE € In common parlance, leadership can mean: (1) to direct or command; (2) to go first and ( ) to induce.
€ Three

types of international leadership:

ƒ ƒ

Hegemonic leadership ² powerful enough to maintain the essential rules governing interstate relation, and is willing to do so. Unilateral initiative ² going first and setting an example. Multiple leadership - is based on action to induce other states to help stabilize an international regime.

CONCLUSION € An appropriate foreign policy for the most powerful state must rest on a clear analysis of changing world politics. € The theorists made it clear that their argument is not that the traditional view of world politics is wrong. € Careful analysis is essential for coping appropriately with the turbulent world of our time. ´In battle, the sword is mightier than the pen, but over the long runs, pens guide the swords.µ

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful