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Title: Live and let die : adaptability and endurance of regional organisations in Northern Europe
Author: Etzold, Tobias
ISNI:       0000 0004 2692 5802
Awarding Body: The Manchester Metropolitan University
Current Institution: Manchester Metropolitan University
Date of Award: 2010
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This study investigates the adaptability and the endurance of International Organisations (IOs). Since IOs emerge under specific external circumstances and conditions, it is questionable whether they can easily continue to exist and remain relevant once their external circumstances have changed. The specific reasons for a continued need for IOs, the extent of the necessity for adaptation and the specific circumstances and conditions enabling or disabling IOs to adapt, endure and remain relevant are not entirely clear and under-researched. For further specification, this research tests relevant theoretical assumptions in three case studies of regional organisations in Northern Europe. For the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS), the Nordic Council (NC) and the Nordic Council of Ministers (NCM), questions of organisational adaptability, future relevance and endurance are particularly topical as the enlargement of the European Union (EU) in 2004 and increasing Europeanization have confronted them with new external circumstances. The study utilises international relations theories and organisational theories as a theoretical framework. For the application of theoretical assumptions on international institutions' adaptability and endurance to the case studies, three analytical models have been elaborated. They include organisational adaptability and endurance as dependent variables and several independent variables. Methodologically, this thesis is a qualitative study. Applied research methods include a qualitative content analysis of primary and secondary sources and semi-structured interviews. The study establishes that the CBSS, the NC and the NCM have gone through various difficult phases, in which their relevance for future regional cooperation was doubted. In response, they implemented several changes, created future purposes and survived so far. Although to different extents, all three showed at least some ability to adapt. The study sheds some light on the three regional organisations' adaptability and the requirements for endurance, provides some empirical evidence to test three analytical models and contributes to the theoretical debate on these aspects, providing also a springboard for future research. Several of the findings are applicable to other IOs.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available