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Integrating Realist and Neoliberal Theories of War


  • Geller Daniel S.

    () (Department of Political Science, Wayne State University, 2043 Faculty Administration Building,Detroit, MI 48207, USA, Phone: +313-577-6328)

  • Travlos Konstantinos

    (Department of Political Science, Ozyegin University, Istanbul, Turkey)


The requirements for global security and international stability vary according to the perspective brought to bear on the subject. Indeed, the structural realist and neoliberal paradigms present markedly different views on the sources of war and prescriptions for peace. Structural realism focuses on system-level capability distributions, alliances, and dyadic power balances as factors associated with the onset of war. Neoliberalism emphasizes the importance of international institutions, democracy, and economic interdependence in maintaining global security. This study develops an integrated model of war and peace based on system-level factors drawn from both paradigms and utilizes a new database reflecting the level of major power policy coordination. The findings for the period of 1816–2007 indicate that interaction effects of these realist and neoliberal variables complement their relationships with global patterns of interstate conflict. The basic conclusion to be drawn is that both concentrated power and managerial cooperation at the apex of the international system are required to produce a more peaceful world.

Suggested Citation

  • Geller Daniel S. & Travlos Konstantinos, 2019. "Integrating Realist and Neoliberal Theories of War," Peace Economics, Peace Science, and Public Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 25(2), pages 1-29, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:pepspp:v:25:y:2019:i:2:p:29:n:2

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    international theory; neoliberalism; realism; war;


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