A NEOCLASSICAL ANALYSIS OF IRANIAN FOREIGN POLICY

Frederikke Kjær Ramsby, Nikolaj Simon Parbo & Sune Thomas Skaarup

Studenteropgave: Bachelorprojekt

Abstrakt

This thesis seeks to examine the primary causes to Iranian foreign policy in the period from 2005 tillthe nuclear deal in July 2015. By examining the political situation in the Middle East and internally inIran, it has become clear that Iran’s foreign policy is motivated primarily by strategic interest, ratherthan idealist reasoning. The important domestic factors are e.g. their self-perception as a Shiite nation,and their revolutionary ideology and rhetoric, which have proven to be important mobilization factors.Furthermore, the institutional structure in Iran is an important factor. E.g. the Supreme LeaderAyatollah Khamenei holds veto on foreign policy matters, while supervising the political system,which is saturated by group competition between reformists, pragmatic conservatives and hardliners.The Iranian political system is a web of overlapping power centers, interests and personal ties, which insome cases has left the elected politicians with little power. The problematic Iranian economy and theconflict in Syria also influence the group competition between the political factions, as they disagree onwhether Iran should remain isolated or open up politically and economically. In this thesis thesevariables is addressed in relation to Iran’s foreign policy in Syria and Lebanon. The theoreticalframework applied is neoclassical realism, since this incorporates both regional and domesticperspectives that constitute the foreign policy. The neoclassical realism is found applicable to the caseof Iran, as the systemic imperatives are the most important factor when the foreign policy isdetermined, but domestic factors matter as well.

UddannelserBasis - International Samfundsvidenskabelig Bacheloruddannelse, (Bachelor uddannelse) Bachelor
SprogEngelsk
Udgivelsesdato25 maj 2016
Antal sider57
VejledereSune Haugbølle

Emneord

  • Neo Classical Realism
  • Iran
  • Foreign policy