Costa Rica: An illusion of uniqueness?

Jeppe Møbjerg Rasmussen, Asbjørn Mønster & Ioana Ruxandra Postelnicu

Studenteropgave: Semesterprojekt


This project aims to give a comprehensive explanation of Costa Rican action and rhetoric in foreign affairs, considering the challenges facing them and the Central American Region. The project has explained Costa Rican international relations at different levels. Firstly, the analysis explored the link between domestic and regional challenges facing Costa Rica, and their branding as a peace-loving country. This has been achieved by researching social statistical material regarding the region, such as the homicide rates, the numbers of civilian firearms and the numbers of armed conflicts, and was supplemented by an investigation of the organization and budget of the Costa Rican police force. Secondly, the project has analyzed Costa Rica’s role in the military de-escalation of Central America, based on Paul Collier’s empirical findings of indicators of regional cooperation on military de-escalation. Furthermore, there was an emphasis on how reciprocity in interdependency is made harder by the rooted tension between Costa Rica and their neighbor Nicaragua, and by the region’s history of turmoil and violence. Lastly, the focus shifted towards how Costa Rica’s options in foreign policy were, and still are intrinsically connected to the international power constellations. The project thus stressed that US hegemony can be seen to have had a great influence over the strategies chosen by Costa Rica, and that hegemony can well be manifested in the economic realm. Furthermore, Costa Rica’s trade and diplomatic relationship to the People’s Republic of China is another foreign policy aspect which proves Costa Rican band-wagoning strategies and the fact that liberal discourses of the Human Security paradigm are secondary to the realities of financial self-interest and national security.

UddannelserGlobal Studies, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Bachelor el. kandidat
Udgivelsesdato14 jan. 2013
VejledereOlivier Rubin


  • Central America
  • Uniqueness
  • Foreign policy
  • Neo-Realism
  • Odious Debt
  • De-militarized nation
  • Costa Rica