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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - International Politics
Title Foreign policy coordination vis-a-vis the international norm of sovereignty: Macedonia’s and Montenegro’s recognition of Kosovo
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2017
Page numbers 1-16
URL https://link.springer.com/article/10.1057/s41311-017-0061-9
Historically, recognition of new states is widely acknowledged to have been a function of the society of states’ normative judgement about sovereignty during different historical periods. Despite recognition being an individual practice of each state, ‘Great Powers’ have often preferred to take a coordinated action amongst themselves when recognizing new states, setting thus a normative standard for smaller states to follow. This article sets to examine how small states coordinate recognition when ‘Great Powers’ fail to do so. By adopting an analytical framework which enmeshes the domains and conditions in which foreign policy change and international norms interact, this article examines the cases of Macedonia’s and Montenegro’s coordinated foreign policy change vis-à-vis Kosovo’s independence. The article finds that Macedonia’s and Montenegro’s coordinated foreign policy change was enabled only after the conditions primarily in the domain of politics and polity at the international level changed, enabling coordination to take place. Unlike the dominant claims in Foreign Policy literature that conceive of the ‘window of opportunity’ as exogenously given to actors, this article introduces the notion of foreign policy coordination arguing that actors can in fact be actively engaged in creating a ‘window of opportunity’ to materialise their desired foreign policy change.

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