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Is the EU's and NATO's Role in Institution Building in the Post-Soviet Space Counterbalanced by Russia and China?

Rainer Schweickert

While the EU figured prominently both in international academic and political debates about the EU'stransformative power without a membership perspective, NATO complements the EU in promoting specificsubstances of democracy, e.g., democratic and civil control over the military as well as market economy in thedefense sectors, and these drivers of change may be counterbalanced by Russia and China challengingdemocratization and promoting authoritarian tendencies. We argue that the influence of Russia and China are tobe measured in terms of regional integration schemes, actual presence (population or military), and traderelations. Extending a previous framework (Melnykovska andSchweickert, NATO as an External Driver ofInstitutional Change in Post-Communist Countries, forthcoming in Peace and Defence Economics), we provideeconometric evidence based on a panel of post-communist countries. We argue that the EU has to considerpositive and negative influences carefully when formulating a more robust and meaningful neighbourhoodstrategy.

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