A Small State Maneuvering in the Changing World Order: Denmark’s “Creative Agency” Approach to Engagement with the BRICs

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  • Camilla T. N. Sørensen
How are small states managing the shift under way in the global economic and political order from the United States and Europe towards other regions, especially Asia? In the International Relations literature, there is a tendency to focus on the great powers – they set the scene, and the small states have to adjust, and therefore their different national political characteristics, values and preferences are not seen as having a strong influence. Being small is seen as an inherent disadvantage in international politics, but are there also advantages? Analyzing how Danish foreign policy, especially the Danish approach to the BRICs, has developed in recent years, I show how Denmark – a small state – is trying to maneuver in the changing world order through a “creative agency” approach characterized by pragmatic low-profile activism. I develop a neoclassical realist framework and use this in order to analyse the Danish foreign policy reactions to the changing world order and show how the emergence of new powers is gradually affecting Denmark’s foreign policy priorities and its “policy profile.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEmerging Powers, Emerging Markets, Emerging Societies : Global Responses
EditorsSteen Fryba, Xing Li
Number of pages23
Place of PublicationBasingstoke, UK
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Publication date1 Feb 2016
ISBN (Print)9781137561770
ISBN (Electronic)9781137561787
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2016
SeriesInternational Political Economy Series

ID: 160026900