The Correlates of Transatlantic Burden-Sharing: Revising the Agenda for Theoretical and Policy Analysis

19 Pages Posted: 9 Nov 2016

See all articles by Jordan Becker

Jordan Becker

King's College London; United States Military Academy, Department of Social Science; Vesalius College; Free University of Brussels (VUB)-Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Institute for European Studies, Students

Date Written: November 9, 2016

Abstract

This paper seeks to identify an updated and policy-relevant research agenda for transatlantic defense burden sharing. There is a significant gap between recent work revisiting the burden sharing issue from a public choice perspective and that revisiting it from a security perspective. The public choice perspective seems to have largely ignored much of the new security scholarship, and the new security scholarship reviews the public choice scholarship, but suggests that its relevance is limited. This gap is unfortunate, because states’ decisions on defense spending are likely shaped by a range of factors, including the spending choices of other states as identified in the public choice literature, but also strategic and cultural factors highlighted in the security studies literature, and domestic macroeconomic factors largely absent from either literature. I contend that the factors identified as independent variables in recent qualitative literature are extremely useful analytically, and, fortunately, they have reasonable proxies in available quantitative data that allows us to extend their study to larger groups of countries and longer time periods. Likewise, the public choice perspective continues to provide insights into defense spending choices. Operationalizing new qualitative factors and integrating them into a model that also makes use of canonical public choice variables enables analysis that is more complete. I build on this insight to synthesize the most notable of the factors identified in both literatures, and offer some common ground for analysis that will benefit both scholars and practitioners.

Keywords: NATO, EU, Transatlantic Security, Defense Economics, Burden Sharing, European Security, Strategy

JEL Classification: C01, C12, C13, C21, C26, D74, F50, F51, F52, F53, F55, H56

Suggested Citation

Becker, Jordan, The Correlates of Transatlantic Burden-Sharing: Revising the Agenda for Theoretical and Policy Analysis (November 9, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2866864 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2866864

Jordan Becker (Contact Author)

King's College London ( email )

King's College London Strand
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

United States Military Academy, Department of Social Science ( email )

600 Thayer Rd
West Point, NY 10996
United States

Vesalius College ( email )

Pleinlaan 2
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium

Free University of Brussels (VUB)-Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Institute for European Studies, Students ( email )

Ixelles
Belgium

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