The coercive power of shared values
journal contributionposted on 23.05.2021, 21:13 by Robert AysonRobert Ayson
While values often evoke noble aims, groups of countries sometimes use statements about the values they share to coerce others. Allies coordinate around their shared values talk to apply reputational pressure on adversaries. Examples include attempts by the United States and its liberal democratic allies in Asia to coerce China and by EU and NATO members to coerce Russia. Shared values talk can also be used to discipline wayward allies who are supposed to be committed to the political principles in question. EU leaders and some of Washington’s NATO allies have sought to place such pressure on the Trump Administration. Participating in shared values talk may also be self-coercive. But if values talk is to be an effective form of coercion, it must impose costs that the target deems important.