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Strategic Rivalries in World Politics
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  • Cited by 10
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    This book has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Colgan, Jeff D. and R. Lucas, Edward 2017. Revolutionary Pathways: Leaders and the International Impacts of Domestic Revolutions. International Interactions, p. 1.

    Sample, Susan G. 2017. From Territorial Claim to War: Timing, Causation, and the Steps-to-War. International Interactions, Vol. 40, Issue. 2, p. 270.

    Valeriano, Brandon and Powers, Matthew 2017. Complex Interstate Rivals. Foreign Policy Analysis, p. n/a.

    Carmichael, Cathie 2017. Genocide, Risk and Resilience.

    Rudkevich, Gennady Travlos, Konstantinos and Diehl, Paul F. 2017. Terminated or Just Interrupted? How the End of a Rivalry Plants the Seeds for Future Conflict. Social Science Quarterly, Vol. 94, Issue. 1, p. 158.

    Florea, Adrian 2017. Where Do We Go from Here? Conceptual, Theoretical, and Methodological Gaps in the Large-N Civil War Research Program1. International Studies Review, Vol. 14, Issue. 1, p. 78.

    Maoz, Zeev and San-Akca, Belgin 2017. Rivalry and State Support of Non-State Armed Groups (NAGs), 1946-20011. International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 56, Issue. 4, p. 720.

    Dreyer, David R. 2017. One Issue Leads to Another: Issue Spirals and the Sino-Vietnamese War. Foreign Policy Analysis, Vol. 6, Issue. 4, p. 297.

    Dreyer, David R. 2017. Issue Conflict Accumulation and the Dynamics of Strategic Rivalry1. International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 54, Issue. 3, p. 779.

    Manicom, James and O'Neil, Andrew 2017. Sino-Japanese strategic relations: will rivalry lead to confrontation?. Australian Journal of International Affairs, Vol. 63, Issue. 2, p. 213.


Book description

International conflict is neither random nor inexplicable. It is highly structured by antagonisms between a relatively small set of states that regard each other as rivals. Examining the 173 strategic rivalries in operation throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, this book identifies the differences rivalries make in the probability of conflict escalation and analyzes how they interact with serial crises, arms races, alliances and capability advantages. The authors distinguish between rivalries concerning territorial disagreement (space) and rivalries concerning status and influence (position) and show how each leads to markedly different patterns of conflict escalation. They argue that rivals are more likely to engage in international conflict with their antagonists than non-rival pairs of states and conclude with an assessment of whether we can expect democratic peace, economic development and economic interdependence to constrain rivalry-induced conflict.


‘Strategic Rivalries in World Politics makes several substantive contributions to our understanding of rivalries. First, the conceptual and empirical distinctions between spatial and positional rivalries are a major contribution to the literature that treats all rivalries as the same. Second, a number of the empirical findings challenge or reinforce past findings about rivalries and thereby extend our knowledge of those phenomena. Yet, the contributions are not confined to the rivalry genre. A nice feature of the book is that the authors use rivalries to gain insights into the validity and utility of some important models and works in international conflict. They demonstrate that considering international conflict in the rivalry context changes or enhances the insights gained from several prominent approaches.’

Paul F. Diehl - University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

‘This book is a theoretically pathbreaking, historically grounded, empirically systematic, and methodologically rigorous analysis of the origins, escalation, and consequences of strategic rivalries. It is essential reading for anyone interested in the underlying sources of international conflict, the dynamics of serial crises, and the multiple paths to conflict escalation and war.’

Jack S. Levy - Rutgers University

‘This is a book of major importance. It provides new data and new findings that greatly enhance our knowledge of inter-state rivalries, conflict, and war. International Relations scholars and diplomatic historians will find this essential reading.’

John A. Vasquez - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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