Date Thesis Awarded

4-2014

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)

Department

International Relations

Advisor

Susan Peterson

Committee Member

Amy Oakes

Committee Member

Laurie Koloski

Abstract

This thesis evaluates the connection between ratification and alliance structure, formation, and reliability. It hypothesizes that as ratification requirements become more rigorous, alliance formation becomes less likely and alliance structures become more likely. In the mean time, ratified alliances will be more reliable. This thesis tests these theories using both qualitative and quantitative evidence. Applying case studies on the League of Nations, it illustrates how the increased rigor of ratification rules makes alliance formation more difficult. Meanwhile, member-level data from the Alliance Treaties and Obligations dataset between 1815 and 2000 suggests that ratification makes alliances more reliable. Overall, then, ratification does seem to have an impact on alliance politics.

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