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Stability and change in strategic beliefs of Tony Blair about the Middle East peace process: institutional transition from Premiership to the Middle East Quartet

Abstract : Recently there has been increasing interest in the socialization theory in the academic world. Yet, many scholars claim that the socialization within international institutions remains underdeveloped. Constructivists hold that the behavior of relevant actors changes due to endogenous change in their normative characteristics and identities. Another underdeveloped trend in academic scholarship is application of socialization approaches to the domain of peace studies and, in particular, international mediation. Neither is there consensus about whether identity, nature and cognitive characteristics of a mediator are indispensable for effective mediation. If on the one hand, certain scholars have addressed the identity of a mediator as predictors of success (for example, Oran Young, Jacob Bercovitch). On the other hand, others would reduce it to a secondary position (for example, Marvin Ott) arguing that they are essentially irrelevant compared to other contextual variables. Mediation scholarship has undertaken a number of essential case studies about the context and condition of high-level third party involvement. Yet past analyses of high-level actors taking part in mediation activities have not sufficiently treated the impact of international institutions on cognitive processes of mediators. For this reason, our doctoral analysis seeks to contribute to filling the above-mentioned gaps by combining these two perspectives: sociological and conflict resolution. The focus of our work is Tony Blair in the context of the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. We seek to investigate Tony Blair's cognitive attitude towards the Middle East peace process within two institutional contexts: first, as British Prime Minister (1997-2007) and, subsequently, as the Middle East Quartet's Envoy (2007 until nowadays). In general terms, we intend to undertake insight into Tony Blair's conceptual understanding of the causes of the conflict, his perception about the intentions and capabilities of the parties, as well his strategic beliefs about the most optimal approaches to the peaceful settlement.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, May 10, 2011 - 9:08:25 AM
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Sardor Usmanov. Stability and change in strategic beliefs of Tony Blair about the Middle East peace process: institutional transition from Premiership to the Middle East Quartet. Political science. Université Montesquieu - Bordeaux IV; Institut d'études politiques de Bordeaux; Centre Émile Durkheim, 2011. English. ⟨tel-00591755⟩

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