Reconsidering the concept of influence: the case of Turkey’s relations with the Middle East (2003-2014)
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This thesis propounds a new conceptual analysis of influence in international relations. First, it advances a novel definition of influence, with additional clarifications on the relationship between influence and power(s). Second, this thesis addresses the causes of states’ quest for influence in international relations. This thesis identifies three motives of security, economy, and identity as existential imperatives of state conduct to seek influence in international relations. Third, this thesis presents an analysis of the patterns and causes of variations among these motives in states’ regional foreign policies. Finally, Turkey’s dyadic relationships in the Middle East between 2003 and 2014, specifically with the states of Syria, Iran, and Palestine, constitutes the case study of this thesis.