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Changes in the world balance of power and the problem of exporting the models of political and economic development

2009

This joint Russian-German project focuses on studying the theoretical and practical aspects of the international political and economic consequences of a qualitative shift in the balance of powers in the world arena that has occurred over recent years.

The objective of the work is the fundamental research of the role and place of the dissemination of national economic and political development models in the foreign policy of major economic and political power centers in the world, determining the role of this factor in the process of establishing the new international order based on an analysis of policies implemented by Western countries (the US and European Union), Russia, China, India and Brazil.

The project aimed to study the intentions, capabilities and actions of Russia, China, India and Brazil to disseminate (on a global or regional scale) their models of socio-economic and political development. The question of whether these countries are able and intend to establish their own international order, including the rules, values and development models, and whether these countries see dissemination of their development model as a mandatory condition of establishing the new international order is still uncertain. At the same time, dissemination of the economic and political model is an essential element of the strategy and tactics of Western countries and it can be used as an ideal model for comparison.

The relevance of the research is determined by the state of the current global economic and political governance. We see an increasing international tendency towards conflicts and intensifying threats for national and international security. Amid the international financial-economic crisis, the international community (especially in the context of the West that still plays a major part in the existing international economic order) has been unable to find effective ways to overcome this. At the same time, there is an apparent lack of understanding in the expert community and political circles regarding to what the post-crisis international order will look like.

In the context of the project, we have conducted content analysis of program strategic documents of the given states concerning foreign and foreign trade policy, reports delivered by key public figures, specific steps and decisions taken by these states in respect to foreign countries as well as a comparative analysis of approaches of these centers of power in the world economy and world politics to the problems of exporting their models of socio-economic and socio-political development.

Among our most important conclusions, we note that propagation by the main centers of power (leading states and their allies) of development models is an indispensible part of forming a new global or regional international order around the respective centers as it is an aggregation of legal and value regulation.

Full-scale competition among models of socio-economic development occurs only when it involves not only the main poles and centers of power, but also peripheries.

Extrapolation of national models of economic and political development by the main centers of power is a requirement for establishing and consolidating their poles and blocs. In this case, the force, legal and institutional regulation in the framework of these blocs is supplemented by value regulation. The blocs become economically as well as politically homogeneous.

It is this aggregation of homogeneous on the inside but individual orders that should form the new heterogeneous pluralistic multi-polar international order, as proclaimed by Russia and China.

The change in the balance of power in the international economic and political system puts the issue of reforming the current international economic and political order (to reflect strengthening of the new non-Western centers of power, including Russia and China) to the fore. Since the new centers stick to a different model of socio-economic development than the creators of the current international order, we can make a theoretical assumption that the reform will be much deeper than merely a change in decision-making procedures.