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Authoritarian Regionalism in the Modern World Politics

  • 6 hour course by Anastassia Obydenkova (IBEI)
  • June 21, 22 & 23 (12:00 - 14:00h CEST)
  • Format: online

This course is about modern autocracies and their strategies to engage with neighbouring states and to form international organizations at global scale. These international organizations (founded and sponsored by such autocracies as China, Venezuela, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Russia) became important actors in the world politics of 21st century. Examples of these organizations are the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas, the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Eurasian Economic Union, among others. The influence of this “authoritarian regionalism” has radically increased in terms of both geographic scope and intensity, creating an unprecedented challenge to democracies and democratization worldwide, as well as to policy-makers. This course will address the impact, importance, causes and consequences of these international organizations in global politics and in Eurasia (looking into the implications for the EU’s External Neighborhood Policy). Understanding and analysis of authoritarian regionalism worldwide are relevant from both scientific and policy perspectives. How do these newly emerged international organizations interrelate and interact with the outside world? How do they counteract and confront the danger of democratization in their own member states and neighboring states? How and why do the political regimes, economic development, religions and cultures of the states matter in the foundation and development of these international organizations? The course aims to address these questions through travelling to “zones” of authoritarian regionalism in Arab regions (e.g., the Gulf Cooperation Council), in Latin American (e.g., the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America), post-Communist Eurasia (e.g., the Eurasian Economic Union), and China (e.g., the Shanghai Cooperation Council). Special attention will be paid to the implications and challenges faced by policy-makers in the EU’s Neighborhood and Eurasia.

⬇️  Reading List (pdf)