a1 Rutgers University. E-mail: email@example.com
Though scholars widely claim that issue linkage—the simultaneous negotiation of multiple issues for joint settlement—can help states conclude international agreements, there exist some notable skeptics. Resolving this debate requires empirical evidence. However, beyond a few case studies, there exists no direct and systematic evidence that issue linkages actually increase the probability of agreement. I address this lack of direct and systematic evidence by combing original data on failed alliance negotiations with data from the Alliance Treaty Obligations and Provisions (ATOP) database. Using matching techniques, I find that, for alliance negotiations between 1860 to 1945, offers of trade linkage did substantially increase the probability of agreement. Besides confirming issue linkage's ability to help clinch an agreement, this article's research design and evidence have far-reaching implications for the study of negotiations and alliances. The research design illustrates the value of considering the “dogs that didn't bark” as it identifies both successful and failed negotiations. The article's evidence explains the high rate of alliance compliance identified by previous scholars and highlights a need to rethink the alliance formation process.
Paul Poast is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
I thank William Roberts Clark, David Carter, Luke Keele, Barbara Koremenos, Ashley Leeds, William MacMillian, Francesca Molinari, Walter Mebane, James D. Morrow, Jeffrey Ritter, Allan Stam, Johannes Urpelainen, Gary Uzonyi, Alton Worthington, two anonymous reviewers, and the editors of IO for comments and suggestions. I thank Christina Davis and Tanisha Fazal for responding to my questions and requests. Earlier versions of this article were presented at the 2009 International Studies Association Annual Meeting, the 2010 New Faces in Political Methodology Conference at Penn State University, the 2010 American Political Science Association Annual Meeting, and seminars at the University of Michigan. All errors are the sole responsibility of the author.
Supplemental material for this article can be found at www.journals.cambridge.org/ino2012006.