Why Do States Join Some Universal Treaties but not Others? An Analysis of Treaty Commitment Preferences
Forthcoming, Journal of Conflict Resolution
47 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2012 Last revised: 2 Oct 2014
Date Written: September 22, 2014
Preferences are crucial to the analysis of many key questions regarding international institutions. This paper analyzes the key predictors of states' preferences over international institutions. It does so by using a spatial-modeling approach that conceptualizes a treaty commitment preference space that includes agreements across multiple policy areas. I analyze the treaty commitment preference space in order to better understand the key dimensions of these preferences. I find that economics, and particularly trade, is the clearest and most consistent predictor of treaty commitment preferences, including with respect to many treaties in non-economic policy areas.
Keywords: International cooperation, treaties, ideal point estimation
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