"The Sanctions Debate and the Logic of Choice"
Journal Article, International Security, volume 24, issue 3, pages 80-107
Author: David A. Baldwin
Do economic sanctions "work"? Is this the question scholars should be asking? David Baldwin of Columbia University addresses "the basic paradox" he sees at the core of the sanctions debate: nation-states and international organizations are using sanctions with growing frequency at the same time that many in the scholarly community discount the utility of economic sanctions as a foreign policy tool. To explain this seeming contradiction, Baldwin maintains that while scholars tend to frame the debate in terms of whether economic sanctions "work," policymakers focus on the question of whether they should be used. In addition, scholars often use different concepts and methodologies when discussing sanctions, which results in disjointed and ultimately ineffective argumentation. According to Baldwin, the stakes for the scholarly community are high, because "until researchers agree on which questions to ask and on how to seek answers, the sanctions debate is unlikely to produce useful policy-relevant knowledge."
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