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Nilsson, Niklas
Publications (7 of 7) Show all publications
Nilsson, N. (2015). Beacon of Liberty: Role Conceptions, Crises and Stability in Georgia’s Foreign Policy, 2004–2012. (Doctoral dissertation). Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Beacon of Liberty: Role Conceptions, Crises and Stability in Georgia’s Foreign Policy, 2004–2012
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In 2004, Mikheil Saakashvili was elected president in Georgia, committing to a foreign policy that would ostensibly make his country a leading example of reform and democratization in the post-Soviet space, and a net-contributor to Euro-Atlantic security. Throughout its time in power and until its defeat in Georgia’s 2012 parliamentary elections, the Saakashvili government remained steadfast in its commitment to establishing these international roles for Georgia, despite developments in both the country’s international and domestic contexts that could plausibly have made these roles, and the foreign policy decisions deriving from them, redundant.

This dissertation explores the relationship between national role conceptions (NRCs) and foreign policy stability. It demonstrates how Georgia’s NRCs as a Beacon of Liberty and a Net-Security Contributor, evolving specifically in the relationship between the Georgian and U.S. governments during these years, contributed to stability in Georgia’s foreign policy. Yet these NRCs were also subjected to serious challenges, particularly relating to two crises ensuing over the November 2007 riots in Tbilisi and the August 2008 war between Georgia and Russia. In both cases, the Georgian government was subjected to conflicting imperatives emanating from its own role conceptions, the expectations voiced by its U.S. counterparts, and the immediate demands of crisis decision making.

Drawing on recent advances in foreign policy role theory and crisis management theory, two social mechanisms are developed, role location and role conflict management. Role location is a long-term process of interaction between the actor and significant others, resulting in a gradual harmonization of role expectations and intentions. Role conflict management instead represents the actor’s handling of potentially disruptive moments, raising questions about the credibility and legitimacy of existing NRCs in the eyes of others, and confronting the actor with choices regarding stability and change in existing NRCs.

The framework is applied in an analysis of the Georgian government’s foreign policy vis-à-vis the U.S. in the years 2004-2012, with particular attention to the disruptive effects of the crises in 2007-2008, and the actions taken to address the resulting role conflicts. The analysis draws on unique first-hand material, including interviews with members of the Georgian and U.S. foreign policy elites, confidential diplomatic correspondence and official speeches, to uncover the processes by which the mechanisms of role location and role conflict management played out in Georgia’s foreign policy. The dissertation concludes that the stability in Georgia’s foreign policy stemmed from the fact that the two NRCs became deeply socially embedded in Georgia’s relations with the U.S. over time, but also from the Georgian government’s ability to adapt its NRCs in response to crises, the role expectations of significant others, and contextual change. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2015. p. 280
Series
Skrifter utgivna av Statsvetenskapliga föreningen i Uppsala, ISSN 0346-7538 ; 192
Keywords
Georgia, United States, Foreign Policy, Role Theory, Crisis Management
National Category
Political Science
Research subject
Politics, Economy and the Organization of Society; Baltic and East European studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-28208 (URN)978-91-554-9274-8 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-09-18, Brusewitz, Gamla torget 6, Uppsala, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-08-31 Created: 2015-09-07 Last updated: 2016-01-19Bibliographically approved
Nilsson, N. (2014). EU saknar långsiktig strategi för Ukraina.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>EU saknar långsiktig strategi för Ukraina
2014 (Swedish)Other (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-22943 (URN)
Note

Artikel i Svenska Dagbladets nätupplaga

Available from: 2014-03-31 Created: 2014-03-31 Last updated: 2014-04-03Bibliographically approved
Nilsson, N. (2014). Georgia's Conflicts: Abkhazia and South Ossetia. In: Svante E. Cornell and Michael Jonsson (Ed.), Conflict, Crime, and the State in Postcommunist Eurasia: (pp. 103-128). Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Georgia's Conflicts: Abkhazia and South Ossetia
2014 (English)In: Conflict, Crime, and the State in Postcommunist Eurasia / [ed] Svante E. Cornell and Michael Jonsson, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014, p. 103-128Chapter in book (Refereed)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-22944 (URN)000332676000006 ()2-s2.0-84942569561 (Scopus ID)978-0-8122-0898-6 (ISBN)978-0-8122-4565-3 (ISBN)
Available from: 2014-03-31 Created: 2014-03-31 Last updated: 2015-11-16Bibliographically approved
Nilsson, N. (2013). The October 2012 Elections and the Role of Democracy in Georgia's Foreign Policy. Stockholm: Utrikespolitiska institutet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The October 2012 Elections and the Role of Democracy in Georgia's Foreign Policy
2013 (English)Report (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Utrikespolitiska institutet, 2013. p. 22
Series
UI Occational papers, ISSN 0284-6624 ; 2013:15
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Research subject
Baltic and East European studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-21603 (URN)
Available from: 2014-01-28 Created: 2014-01-28 Last updated: 2018-01-11Bibliographically approved
Cornell, S. & Nilsson, N. (2009). Georgian Politics since the August 2008 War. Demokratizatsiya, 17(3), 251-268
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Georgian Politics since the August 2008 War
2009 (English)In: Demokratizatsiya, ISSN 1074-6846, E-ISSN 1940-4603, Vol. 17, no 3, p. 251-268Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Georgian politics since late 2007 has attracted interest mainly because of its highly polarized political climate. The leadership of Mikheil Saakashvili, widely heralded as a beacon of democracy in the post-Soviet space following the peaceful Rose Revolution of 2003, is pitted against an array of determined opposition forces that seek his removal and accuse his government of authoritarian tendencies. Yet a closer study of Georgian politics since the August 2008 Russian invasion suggests that the polarization of its politics is not reflected in society, which overwhelmingly supports conciliation and dialogue rather than another round of revolutionary change. By mid-2009, the overheated Georgian political scene showed signs of adapting to this reality.

National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-13479 (URN)10.3200/DEMO.17.3.251-268 (DOI)2-s2.0-70349543965 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2011-11-23 Created: 2011-11-23 Last updated: 2017-12-08Bibliographically approved
Nilsson, N. (2009). Georgia's Rose Revolution: The Break with the Past. In: Svante E. Cornell, S. Frederick Starr (Ed.), The guns of August 2008: Russia's war in Georgia (pp. 85-103). Armonk, N.Y.: M. E. Sharpe
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Georgia's Rose Revolution: The Break with the Past
2009 (English)In: The guns of August 2008: Russia's war in Georgia / [ed] Svante E. Cornell, S. Frederick Starr, Armonk, N.Y.: M. E. Sharpe, 2009, p. 85-103Chapter in book (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Armonk, N.Y.: M. E. Sharpe, 2009
Series
Studies of Central Asia and the Caucasus
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-13480 (URN)978-0-7656-2507-6 (ISBN)
Available from: 2011-11-23 Created: 2011-11-23 Last updated: 2014-01-02Bibliographically approved
Nilsson, N. (2009). Obstacles to Building a Civic Nation: Georgia’s Armenian Minority and Conflicting Threat Perceptions. Ethnopolitics, 8, 135-153
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Obstacles to Building a Civic Nation: Georgia’s Armenian Minority and Conflicting Threat Perceptions
2009 (English)In: Ethnopolitics, ISSN 1744-9057, E-ISSN 1744-9065, Vol. 8, p. 135-153Article in journal (Refereed) Published
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-13478 (URN)10.1080/17449050701422535 (DOI)
Available from: 2011-11-23 Created: 2011-11-23 Last updated: 2017-12-08Bibliographically approved
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