Open Access (free)

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Geir Hønneland and Anne-Kristin Jørgensen

This chapter provides more detail on the theoretical debate about the implementation of international environmental agreements, leading up to a more individualised approach to the issues under investigation here. The first section seeks to place the implementation literature in a wider theoretical context, asking how the two major theoretical approaches to international relations, realism and liberalism, see the role of institutions in the implementation of international agreements. The second section addresses the ‘whats’, ‘whys’, and ‘hows’ of the implementation debate, focusing in particular on the interface between the concepts of implementation, effectiveness, and compliance. The third section sums up some major lessons from implementation of environmental agreements in post-Communist societies. The fourth section examines the background and the experience of implementation in post-Communist states.

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Technology is capital

Fifth Estate’s critique of the megamachine

Steve Millett

Starting from the late 1970s, the Fifth Estate (FE) began to put forward the argument that the technologies of capitalism cannot be separated from the socioeconomic system itself. The FE has attempted to disentangle capital and technology and to create the basis for an analysis of technology as an autonomous social agent. Basing its theoretical position on Karl Marx, Jacques Ellul and Jacques Camatte, it has created a theoretical amalgam. The theoretical amalgam explores the crucial role played by technology in the breakdown of community and the ascendancy of capitalism, and the way it links with capital in an over-arching system of domination. This chapter explores the concepts of 'capital' and 'megamachine'. Megamachines were forms of social organisation, organised by élites, with the aim of achieving particular ends that would be beyond the means of small-scale community activity.

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Sweden and ecological governance

Straddling the fence

Series:

Lennart J. Lundqvist

Sweden is seen as a forerunner in environmental and ecological policy. This book is about policies and strategies for ecologically rational governance, and uses the Swedish case study to ask whether or not it is possible to move from a traditional environmental policy to a broad, integrated pursuit of sustainable development, as illustrated through the ‘Sustainable Sweden’ programme. It begins by looking at the spatial dimensions of ecological governance, and goes on to consider the integration and effectiveness of sustainable development policies. The book analyses the tension between democracy and sustainable development, which has a broader relevance beyond the Swedish model, to other nation states as well as the European Union as a whole. It offers the latest word in advanced implementation of sustainable development.

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Sweden

Another awkward partner?

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Karl Magnus Johansson

Scholars of the European Union (EU) must lift the lid off the 'black box' of domestic politics to understand the behaviour of Member States in the integration processes. This chapter considers the Swedish polity by analysing domestic constraints and institutional characteristics. The overarching aim is to capture the fundamentals of Sweden as an EU member, thereby identifying the primary actors involved in the policy-cycle. The chapter discusses the institutional characteristics and changes following from the Swedish EU membership and the adjustments to the EU policy-cycle. The most important actors involved in the policy-making process are identified. Formally, the obvious actors are the government and the public administration as well as the parliament. In addition, there are non-governmental actors such as interest groups, political parties and the media.

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Kerry Longhurst

This chapter is concerned with the formation of West German strategic culture. It examines several aspects of the rearmament process during the 1950s and estimates the external and internal factors in the rearmament of West Germany. It then tries to draw out the antecedents of (West) German strategic culture, before it presents an account of the creation of the Bundeswehr, which uses the lens of strategic culture. This chapter concludes that the creation of a new strategic culture in West Germany happened through two principal channels, namely the post-war domestic conditions in West Germany and the burden of the demands and will of the allies with regards to the kind of role the Federal Republic should play.

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The study of EU foreign policy

Between international relations and European studies

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Ben Tonra and Thomas Christiansen

This chapter offers a reflection upon an European Union (EU) foreign policy complex that seeks both to address the major definitional issues surrounding the nature and direction of the EU's external relations but which also draws our attention to contemporary theoretical debates in both international relations and European integration. Many texts on the international capacity of the EU focus upon the development of decision-making and policy within Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). The field of study in European political cooperation (EPC)/CFSP has been dominated by empirical accounts of decision-making, policy-making and regional or issue-based case studies. Fewer studies have sought to make explicit theoretical claims upon CFSP and to situate it in broader debates within either European studies or international relations. In the early twenty-first century, the EU is making massive leaps to expand both geographically and sectorally.

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Alistair Cole

This chapter presents an overview of the evolution of the French party system in the first forty-five years of the Fifth Republic. During the Third and Fourth Republics, the fragmented structure of the party system, along with the parliamentary basis of political power, had a direct and divisive impact upon governmental stability. Even 'strong' parties, such as the Parti Communiste Français (PCF) and Rassemblement pour la République (RPR), relied more on the logistical infrastructure provided by municipal government than on their formal party organisations. The chapter identifies the stresses and strains and maps out the important changes that occurred in the 1980s and 1990s. It also identifies three underlying causes of party continuity: institutional incentives, flexible and adaptable party organisations, and the absorptive capacity of the main French political traditions.

Open Access (free)

Straddling the fence

On the possibility of sustainability and democracy in advanced industrial nations

Series:

Lennart J. Lundqvist

This chapter evaluates whether the Swedish government is actually straddling the fence over to sustainable development and whether this expands or limits citizens' opportunities to make autonomous choices of the good life. Though much of the Swedish strategy for a sustainable society is still in the making, it has done enough to warrant some conclusions as to the prospects for ecologically rational governance and outline some crucial aspects of governance as a conceptual framework for studying how societies try to solve their relationships to the natural environment. This chapter considers the Swedish case in relation to the arguments put forth in recent comparative studies of environmental politics and policies for sustainable development.

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The State’s response to extremism

Attitudes towards subversive movements and violent organisations

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Ami Pedahzur

This chapter presents a chronological synopsis of the Israeli response to extra-parliamentary radical elements, and begins with the Altalena affair, a weapons ship sunk by the IDF close to a month after the declaration of the State's independence. It considers the Israeli reaction to those far-right elements which emerged during the 1980s and flourished during the course of the 1990s. The major loci of discussion are the Kach Movement, the ‘Jewish Underground’ movement, the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, and the evolving character of the State's response towards each of these phenomena. It also reviews the state of emergency that held sway in Israel for many years and the legal infrastructure deriving from this predicament which, in effect, enabled the State, in its struggle with violent and insurgent elements, to employ means that would often deviate from the acceptable rule of law in a democratic state.

Open Access (free)

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Kevin Harrison and Tony Boyd

This chapter explores the concept of the state, looking at various theories of the state and identifying its major characteristics and then how far real states measure up to these characteristics. It identifies different 'types' of state in political theory and looks at the major challenges to practical state sovereignty in the modern world. The challenges include the structure of international society; the impact of globalisation; the spread of weapons of mass destruction; the growth of informal ties; the rise of new international actors; and neo-colonialism. State sovereignty has always been predicated upon political power: the practical ability of the state to defend its sovereignty against internal revolt and external enemies. The chapter examines the issue of whether the state is still as fundamental a political institution.