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After VictoryInstitutions, Strategic Restraint, and the Rebuilding of Order after Major Wars, New Edition$
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G. John Ikenberry

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691169217

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691169217.001.0001

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The Settlement of 1945

The Settlement of 1945

(p.163) Chapter Six The Settlement of 1945
After Victory

G. John Ikenberry

Princeton University Press

This chapter explores the order building in the settlement of 1945. The settlement that followed the Second World War provided the most pronounced incentives and capacities for the leading and secondary states to move toward an institutionalized settlement. The United States commanded a far more favorable power position than it did after 1919. It had more capacities to make institutional bargains with other states, and the sharp asymmetries in power made European governments particularly eager for agreements that would establish commitments and restraints. The democratic character of the states involved made the institutional agreements that resulted more credible and effective in mitigating the severest implications of power asymmetry. Moreover, the character of the American domestic system—which provided transparency and “voice opportunities”—and the extensive use of binding institutions served to limit the returns to power and provide assurances to states within the order that they would not be dominated or abandoned.

Keywords:   order building, 1945 settlement, institutionalized settlement, United States, European governments, institutional agreements, power asymmetry, American domestic system, institutional bargains

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