Cover image for The emergence of peer competitors : a framework for analysis
The emergence of peer competitors : a framework for analysis
Szayna, Thomas S., 1960-
Publication Information:
Santa Monica, CA : RAND, 2001.
Physical Description:
xvii, 171 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm.
General Note:
"Prepared for the United States Army."

"MR-1346-A"--P. [4] of cover.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
UB251 .E47 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

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The potential emergence of a peer competitor is probably the most important long-term planning challenge for the Department of Defense. This report addresses the issue by developing a conceptual framework of how a proto-peer (meaning a state that is not yet a peer but has the potential to become one) might interact with the hegemon (the dominant global power). The central aspect of the framework is an interaction between the main strategies for power aggregation available to the proto-peer and the main strategies for countering the rise of a peer available to the hegemon. Then, using exploratory modeling techniques, the pathways of the various proto-peer and hegemon interactions are modeled to identify the specific patterns and combinations of actions that might lead to rivalries. The dominant power has an array of options available to limit the growth of its rivals or to change their ultimate intentions. Too confrontational a strategy, however, risks making a potential neutral power into a foe, while too conciliatory a stance may speed the growth of a competitor. Exploratory modeling suggests which attributes of the countries are most important and the sensitivity of the dominant power to perception errors.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. iii
Figuresp. vii
Tablesp. ix
Summaryp. xi
Acknowledgmentsp. xvii
Chapter 1 Introductionp. 1
Organizationp. 3
Chapter 2 The Rise of a Peerp. 7
What Is a Peer Competitor?p. 7
Powerp. 8
Motivationsp. 9
Global Scalep. 11
Outcome in Doubtp. 12
The Proto-Peer's Strategiesp. 13
The Reform Strategyp. 14
Characteristicsp. 14
Policies and Institutionsp. 15
The Nature of the Challengep. 18
The Revolution Strategyp. 20
Characteristics of Political Revolutionsp. 21
Characteristics of Military Revolutionsp. 25
The Alliance Strategyp. 30
Characteristicsp. 30
The Nature of the Threatp. 33
The Conquest Strategyp. 37
Characteristicsp. 37
The Nature of the Challengep. 38
Does Conquest Still Pay?p. 41
Chapter 3 The Role of the Hegemonp. 45
The Hierarchy in the International State Systemp. 45
The Hegemon's Problemp. 49
The Hegemon's Strategiesp. 53
The Conciliate Strategyp. 54
The Co-opt Strategyp. 57
The Constrain Strategyp. 60
The Compete Strategyp. 63
The Effect of Power Preponderancep. 65
Principal Rivalriesp. 67
Chapter 4 Modeling the Peer-Hegemon Relationshipp. 73
The Decision Calculusp. 75
Modeling the Interaction Between a Proto-Peer and a Hegemonp. 78
Effect of Perceptual Errorsp. 85
Identifying the Attributes that Lead to Competition and Rivalryp. 89
Final Observations and Caveats Regarding the Modelp. 105
Further Development of the Modelp. 107
Chapter 5 Conclusionsp. 109
A. Decision Rulesp. 113
B. Code for the Prototype Hegemon-Peer Modelp. 135
C. The Democratic Peace Ideap. 147
Bibliographyp. 161