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Title: Negotiated trust : U.S.-Russia strategic arms control
Author: Williams, Heather
ISNI:       0000 0004 7659 8950
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2015
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The central question of the thesis is when is trust in arms control in the national interest? Secondary questions include who decides it is in the national interest, and what factors and signals can increase trust, if any? This includes a discussion of existing literature on trust in international relations (IR), such as Rathbun and Wheeler, and incorporates recent research on the role of individuals and personalities in IR, such as Jervis and McDermott. The thesis succinctly discusses the history of arms control dating back to the 12th century. It then proceeds to discuss the contemporary history of U.S.-Russia strategic arms control with case studies on the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT), Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), Moscow Treaty and New START Treaty (NST) to identify factors that most contributed to or detracted from trust across the levels of analysis: international, domestic and individual. Research included over thirty interviews with American and Russian negotiators and policymakers, along with other primary and secondary sources. This thesis concludes with three original findings. First, it introduces the concept of 'negotiated trust', which assigns states a greater degree of agency than previous concepts based on the Prisoner's Dilemma, and treats trust as a spectrum rather than a binary between absent and absolute trust. Ultimately, decisions of trust, like others regarding national interest, are contextual and made in a collective negotiations process. Second, the thesis makes an important empirical finding: trust-building requires consensus-building. The third contribution is the finding that challenges to trust are overcome at the international and domestic levels by a 'trust champion', thereby emphasizing the role of the individual as a cross-cutting factor in the levels of analysis, traversing the international and domestic levels. The thesis also introduces original data in the case studies, particularly the most recent examples of the Moscow Treaty and NST. The thesis concludes with four recommendations for follow-on U.S.-Russia agreements, taking into account current geopolitical conflicts and domestic challenges in both countries.
Supervisor: Bowen, Wyn Quentin ; Freedman, Lawrence David Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available