Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


International Relations

First Advisor's Name

Félix E. Martín

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Kyle Mattes

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Third Advisor's Name

John Oates

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Fourth Advisor's Name

Kaz Miyagiwa

Fourth Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member


International Trade, International Political Economy, Balance of Power, comparative case

Date of Defense



This dissertation explains how the balance of power influences the incidence of international trade agreements. It shows the interaction of factors from the disciplines of Economics, Politics, and International Relations. Specifically, it shows the influence of the balance of power within three cases of trade agreements. The following cases illustrate how states, when negotiating agreements, respond to power competition. This influence of power within state relations is a social interaction but also one where individual states respond. Some of those responses include trade agreements with other states. Systems influence the decisions of negotiators involved in trade agreements. As the cases illustrate, state leaders respond to the power dynamics of the parties involved in negotiations as well as those outside the negotiations.
Therefore, this dissertation shines a light on an under-explored conditioning variable in International Political Economy literature and points to examples where it is relevant in influencing trade agreements. Also, it considers alternative explanations related to the occurrence of trade agreements including hegemony, economics, and politics. It shows that the absence of the balance of power variable would result in an incomplete analysis of why trade agreements occur.





Previously Published In

Chapter Five of this Dissertation was printed as an earlier version in the Florida Political Chronicle (v.25, n1, 2016-17), “Russia-China Energy Relationship: A Contemporary Analysis to 2014. Thank you to the editor for reprinting permission.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



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