Friday, January 3, 2020

Plans for 2020

Well 2020 is here. I am hoping for a massive change in my life on the personal level, to top the happy instance of my marriage. Beyond that though I still have a career to pursue in a field that mightily resits my contributions. Let us see what the plans are for 2020. This is more a plan of aspirations, and as Moltke said, no plan survives first contact with the adversary.

1. Get my two articles on the correlates of increased managerial coordination published. These continue my interstate managerial coordination research program.The two articles are interrelated. One is a quantitative exploration of the connection between war participation highly likely to afflict decision makers with  aversion to war and engagement in managerial coronation conducted for the major powers durable security complex in the 1715-2008 period. The other one is a qualitative companion, which following the logic of discovery, focuses on tracing these dynamics, in addition to the the role of innovative thinking as they occurred or did not occur during two instances of attempted increased managerial coordination, the negotiation for the Treaty of Utrecht, and the negotiations that led to the Final Act of the Congress of Vienna. They used to be part of the same manuscript, but after ten rejections over three years ( at CMPS, ISQ,II,C&C, ISR, JGSS, JIH, JPR, QJPS) I decided to split them. Unfortunately I still need to publish first the quantitative part before the qualitative part, but I have an idea for a venue for the qualitative part. The new quantitative peace was rejected kindly at IS, and not so kindly at II, and I must confess I am a bit burned-out, but I cannot give up on this. It is central part of my research program. So revise and resubmit, though I have run out of journals within my academic grouping (Peace Science (International)).

2. I am working on a piece, which I will present on January 14-15 at the Eurasian Peace Science Netowork meeting at Koc University in Istanbul, which also moves forward the interstate managerial coordination research program. This time I am attempting to speak to several literature at the same time by staking a claim of the applicability of the concept of managerial coordination at durable security clusters other than that of the major powers, forwarding the concept of durable security complex as a umbrella term for the various concepts of region developed in the new regionalism literature, and tying all these together to the territorial peace and concepts of order. My goal is to evaluate John Vasquez's hypothesis that war making around a durable security complex will lead to the degradation of territorial integrity norms among members of that complex, and an increase in territorial issues and territorial wars among members. It is thus a story of demonstration via diffusion effects. Draft manuscript is almost done.

3. Work with Maria Lotito on a paper we have been working on for the last four ? years on comparing contagion patterns between the Arab Spring and Spring of Nations. We had a rejection by JGSS early on and decided on a major revision, but it is really hard to pin down how to sell what we are doing.

4. Work with my wife Dr. Mert-Travlos and Doruk Akyuz on a paper for the 100 year centenary of the Greek-Turkish War of 1919-1923. The idea is to talk about manifestations of interstate rivalry via looking caricatures in the Greek and Turkish press in the 1920-1930 period.

5. I really want to write something on the current Greek-Turkish crisis conditions within the framework of the Steps to War explanatory story. I cannot decide if I want to do it as a policy brief and try to get it out in one of the policy blogs, or as a paper aimed at one of the more oriented policy journals. It depends on how much I want to tackle with the existing corpus. But I want to write this also for personal reasons.

6. I hope we see the publication of my edited volume "Salvation and Catastrophe: The Greek-Turkish War 1919-1923" in 2020. Some revision is likely to be needed, so I am waiting on the editor to return the reviewed manuscript.

7. Apply to a grant so I can finalize a provisional version of mine and Daniel Geller's 1715-1815 Militarized Interstate Dispute Data-set. We tried twice for NSF and did not make it, and there is no TUBITAK program that can cover this. So we need to find new outlets.

7. I have under review a short book manuscript on the Strategic story of the Greek-Turkish clash in the period November 1920-April 1921. Let us see how it goes.

8. Continue translating some material for the era.

And that is it for this year. Happy New Year to all. Good luck on your academic en-devours.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Publication Summary: Integrating Realist and Neoliberal Theories of War

I finally found the time to write a summary of my most recent publication, with Dr. Daniel Geller. This is

Geller, D. S., & Travlos, K. (2019). Integrating Realist and Neoliberal Theories of War. Peace Economics, Peace Science and Public Policy, 25(2).

Abstract: The requirements for global security and international stability vary according to the perspective brought to bear on the subject. Indeed, the structural realist and neoliberal paradigms present markedly different views on the sources of war and prescriptions for peace. Structural realism focuses on system-level capability distributions, alliances, and dyadic power balances as factors associated with the onset of war. Neoliberalism emphasizes the importance of international institutions, democracy, and economic interdependence in maintaining global security. This study develops an integrated model of war and peace based on system-level factors drawn from both paradigms and utilizes a new database reflecting the level of major power policy coordination. The findings for the period of 1816–2007 indicate that interaction effects of these realist and neoliberal variables complement their relationships with global patterns of interstate conflict. The basic conclusion to be drawn is that both concentrated power and managerial cooperation at the apex of the international system are required to produce a more peaceful world.

This paper is the second paper published within my Interstate Managerial Coordination research program. In the first paper (Travlos, K. (2016). From Universalism to Managerial Coordination: Major Power Regulation of the Use of Force. Asian International Studies Review, 17(2), 27-53.) I laid forth the concept of managerial coordination and presented the methodology of for calculating the intensity of managerial coordination (IMaC), and applied to the major powers. In this paper me and Dr. Daniel Geller applied that information to evaluate a key question in international politics. This was the relative role of realist structural factors and liberal systemic factors on fostering interstate peace at the system level of analysis (See the work of  Dinna Zinnes on the difference between system and structure).

In the paper we pitched managerial coordination as an expression of the liberal paradigm in the study of international relations. I am not completely comfortable with that, but if by liberal we mean the idea that institutions count, then there is some sense to this. We thus reviewed the literature on structural conditions and systemic variables and their expected impact on interstate peace, and extracted a number of key “realist” structural conditions and key “liberal” systemic variables in order to evaluate whether “liberal” systemic variables ameliorate the conflict inducing influence of “realist” structural conditions.

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Angry Rant contra Turkish and Greek "nationalists"

This is an angry rant. You were warned.

If there is one thing that I feel contempt for, it is the empty posturing of Greek and Turkish nationalists on the web. From twitter comments to you-tube video comments, these self-professed guardians “of history”, thump their chests at each other claiming this or that war or battle has showing the superiority of their kind over the other. It would be laughable if it was not widespread. And based on what can simply be called lies, or at least a very childish interpretation of history. We are literally driven to war by a bunch of uneducated idiots.

The simple honest interpretation is that none of the wars fought between Greeks and Turks since 1821 were of a character that could lead any educated person, even a nationalist, to conclude one or the other side is superior. Because none of the Greek-Turkish conflicts were fought in a context that would even a bit resemble a duel. Not one. In every conflict one or the other side was either helped by another power, or never really as helpless as said “guardians of history” try to depict.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

New Blog on the Salvation and Catastrophe Series

I have created a new dedicated blog for the Salvation and Catastrophe: The Greek-Turkish War 1919-1923 series, and the general project. All material from this blog on that topic has been migrated to the new blog. Please visit and follow in order to stay on top of that project and the YouTube series.

Monday, August 26, 2019

August 1919

The new episode of Salvation and Catastrophe: The Greek-Turkish War 1919-1923 is now out. Covering August 1919 events!

Friday, July 26, 2019

Salvation and Catastrophe : The Greek-Turkish War, July 1919

The episode of Salvation and Catastrophe: The Greek-Turkish War 1919-1923, that covers the events of July 1919 is now uploaded.

Publication Summary: Mobilization Follies in International Relations

Mobilization Follies in International Relations by Konstantinos Travlos

Over the last academic year, I had two publications come out. Due to life events I was not able to sit down and write a short blog post summarizing them. Now I have a chance. Today I will talk for my contribution to a special issue by the All Azimuth journal. 

The goal of the issue was to provide a series of teaching tools in the form of articles for graduate student methodology and dissertation design courses. My contribution “Mobilization Follies in International Relations: A MultimethodExploration of Why Some Decision Makers Fail to Avoid War When PublicMobilization as a Bargaining Tool Fails”, sought to help students by presenting a full research article, but combining it with commentary on the decisions made throughout the process.