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Christian Leuprecht on "The Demographics of Intervention(ism): Canadian Foreign Policy in Comparative Perspective"

Jan 19, 2016 | 12:30 PM - 02:00 PM

In the aftermath of the Cold War, there was a modest sense of enthusiasm about making the world a better place. Liberal democracy had won out. Now it was only a matter of turning around the fate of atavistic Cold War remnants manifest in disparate conflicts across the world. Liberal internationalists, longing to realize a Kantian “perpetual peace,” came together with armed forces in search of a raison d’être in this new security environment. A quarter of a century on, in the aftermath of Afghanistan and Iraq, those same democracies are morally, fiscally and politically exhausted. In these recent expeditionary missions, NATO member states have been confining themselves to the provision of air capabilities, along with broad-based support and training for local military and security forces, while regional actors have been sharing greater responsibility for operations in their neighbourhood. This paper argues that this trend of limiting exposure to expeditionary interventions is a function of endogenous effects — not of these conflicts per se, but of the demographic constraints faced by Western democracies and their second-order effects on those select countries that have traditionally shouldered much of the collective-security burden.

Christian Leuprecht is Professor of Political Science at the Royal Military College of Canada and Senior Fellow at the Macdonald Laurier Institute. He holds a Governor-in-Council appointment to the governing Council of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, is president of the International Sociological Association’s Research Committee 01: Armed Forces and Conflict Resolution, and a United Nations Security Structure Expert. He is cross-appointed to the Department of Political Studies and the School of Policy Studies at Queen’s University where he is also a fellow of the Institute of Intergovernmental Relations and the Queen’s Centre for International and Defence Policy. As a foremost expert on security and defence, political demography, and comparative federalism and multilevel governance, he is regularly called as an expert witness to testify before committees of Parliament.

Time & Location

Jan 19, 2016 | 12:30 PM - 02:00 PM

Seminar Room, Lansstraße 5 (Graduate School Villa), 14195 Berlin

Dahlem Research School
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft