Take It or Leave It: The Threat of Mediation Withdrawal in Internal Conflicts
2005 (English)In: Paper prepared for presentation at the 2005 Annual Meeting of the International Studies Association, Honolulu, HI, USA, March 2-5, 2005Conference paper (Other (popular scientific, debate etc.))
Mediation theory identifies the threat of mediation withdrawal as a source of leverage and, therefore, as one of the most important prerequisites for success. However, previous research has not examined whether different types of actors differ in their ability to be credible. Not all types of mediators are likely to follow through on a threat of disengagement. I argue that democracies and organisations have internal audiences that reward mediation efforts, regardless of outcome, and therefore, their threats of withdrawal are non-credible. In contrast, non-democratic countries can make their mediation disengagement threats credible, since they do not have to take into account their audience and, therefore, get no positive payoff for being involved in mediation efforts. Hence, non-democratic countries should be expected to outperform democracies and organisations as efficient peace brokers. Using new data on mediation by states and organisations in all intrastate, armed conflict between 1989-2003, the paper examines this argument. The results give support to these claims. Furthermore, an analysis of the contexts in which mediation occur suggests that this correlation is not due to a selection effect.
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IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-68955OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-68955DiVA: diva2:96866
Paper prepared for presentation at the 2005 Annual Meeting of the International Studies Association, Honolulu, HI, USA, March 2-52007-04-242007-04-24