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Strategic interaction and social construction in foreign policy analysis: The Helsinki Strategy revisited

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The Helsinki Strategy has provided a popular case for accounts of foreign policy change. However, certain overlooked aspects have allowed for the emergence of an empirical puzzle. The conception and adoption of the Helsinki Strategy as well as the Greek decision not to pursue a joint application to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for the delimitation of the continental shelf in 2004 is revisited in this study. The latter decision is puzzling to the extent that Greece insisted to include a reference to the ICJ in the Helsinki Summit Conclusions as means of border dispute settlement for European Union (EU) applicants. An explanatory framework which synthesizes rational choice and constructivism and links EU level processes to domestic strategic interactions to explain policy change is constructed and applied to provide a coherent, comprehensive and theoretically valuable account of Greek foreign policy towards Turkey from 1999 to 2004.
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Keywords: Europeanization; Greek foreign policy; foreign policy analysis; rational choice

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Newham College University Centre, London, UK

Publication date: April 2, 2016

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