Reducing Tensions in the South China Sea: Recoupling Theory to Policy




Stoesz, Joshua

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State behavior and interactions in the Indo-Pacific theater is occurring and is explained in a more complete fashion by utilizing an eclectic fusion of neoclassical realism and geopolitics. Chinese motivations and systemic output are in response to both systemic pressure and subsystemic shaping mechanisms that impact policy at the domestic, national, and foreign levels of engagement. Due to their imminent rise, or what they perceive as a return to power, the Chinese are being met with resistance in the South China Sea with balancing occurring in response. This project lays out a qualitative discussion and some limited policy recommendations with regards to the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, consisting of the United States, Japan, India, and Australia vis-à-vis the rise of a revisionist power. In addition, the compatibility and predictive ability of an eclectic theoretical model is examined to demonstrate congruence between grand theories in international relations and its ability to predict limited outcomes that can provide value to policy makers.


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China, Geopolitics, Neoclassical Realism



Global Affairs