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The European Union and Belarus: democracy promotion by technocratic means?

Korosteleva, Elena (2016) The European Union and Belarus: democracy promotion by technocratic means? Democratization, 23 (4). pp. 678-698. ISSN 1351-0347. (doi:10.1080/13510347.2015.1005009)

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Abstract

Is Belarus an enviable constant in international relations: a maverick, isolated from the West and inseparable from the East? On the surface, there seems to be business as usual: Lukashenko's regime remains unchallenged; Belarus’ relations with the European Union – spasmodic at best; while its absorption into Russia's Eurasian project continues apace. Yet, some critical disjunctures – manifested in government tacit resistance to Russia's influence, and more instructively, in people's growing affinity with Europe – may indicate a sea-change transformation in the very fabric of society. This article, utilizing extensive and subject-focused research, conducted in the country between 2009 and 2013, examines the nature and causalities of the occurring change. It argues that democracy promotion, in Belarus’ case, may work better when depoliticized and inculcated, through norms, regulations, and practices of international order, into the daily lives of individuals. Through its continued technocratic, inclusive, and sector-level engagement, European Union governance, even under the conditions of limited bilateral dialogue, have succeeded in fostering much-needed space for reciprocal learning and critical reasoning, which may have far greater transformative potential than manufacturing a single collective will for democracy building.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/13510347.2015.1005009
Uncontrolled keywords: EU democracy promotion, EU-Belarus relations, Russia and Eurasian Union, Eastern Partnership, public legitimation
Subjects: J Political Science
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations > Global Europe Centre
Depositing User: Elena Korosteleva
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2015 14:06 UTC
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2020 16:34 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/50244 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Korosteleva, Elena: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2807-738X
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