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Between a Rock and Hard Place: Three Essays on The Role of Domestic Politics during Economic Sanctions

Zarpli, Omer (2024) Between a Rock and Hard Place: Three Essays on The Role of Domestic Politics during Economic Sanctions. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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How do economic sanctions affect the behavior of the sanctioned states? How does domestic politics moderate this relationship? Over the last few decades, a large body of literature has emerged that examines the effectiveness of sanctions. However, significant gaps in knowledge exist regarding the role of domestic public and politics in the target state. Particularly, I argue that we need to better incorporate the counter-veiling incentives the sanctioned states face. On the one hand, they have incentives to give in to avoid economic costs. But they also have incentives to stand firm to avoid the audience cost. Two factors likely play an important role in either aggravating or alleviating this dilemma the targets
face. In three essays, I examine the effect of target regime type and sender behavior. The first essay examines the role of regime type in whether targets meet the sender demands using a longitudinal analysis. I build a counter-intuitive theory regarding the non-linear effect of democracy challenging some of the existing approaches and find robust empirical support. The second essay explores the effect of sanctions on targets’ foreign policy behavior. Specifically, whether and how they affect the likelihood of a target’s taking militarized action. I find that sanctions increase the risk of a militarized inter-state dispute, even though
this risk is lower for some regimes than others. The third essay examines the effect of sanctions on public opinion in the target state through an original survey experiment fielded in Turkey. The effect on public opinion is a question which has long been seen as critical to understanding sanction effectiveness but one which has attracted scant empirical investigation. Taken together, this dissertation seeks to advance our understanding of the effect of economic sanctions on the target by employing a mixed-method approach and building on insights from multiple disciplines. The findings from this study also have broader implications
for the studies that focus on the role of domestic politics in coercive diplomacy and inter- and intra-state conflict.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Zarpli, Omeromer.zarpli@pitt.eduomz20000-0002-2783-8255
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairHays, Jude C.jch61@pitt.edujch61
Committee MemberFinkel, Stevenfinkel@pitt.edufinkel
Committee MemberSavun, Burcuburcu@pitt.eduburcu
Committee MemberDonno,
Committee MemberMarinov,
Date: 22 May 2024
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 7 December 2021
Approval Date: 22 May 2024
Submission Date: 10 December 2021
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 140
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Political Science
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Economic sanctions, domestic politics, public opinion, audience cost, crisis bargaining, coercive diplomacy
Date Deposited: 22 May 2024 14:41
Last Modified: 22 May 2024 14:41


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