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Negotiations with Peace Settlement Referendums: Comparing the Annan Plan and Good Friday Agreement Experiences

Amaral, Joana (2016) Negotiations with Peace Settlement Referendums: Comparing the Annan Plan and Good Friday Agreement Experiences. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent,.

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Abstract

This thesis investigates how peace negotiation processes influence peace settlement referendum outcomes. It addresses a re-occurring problem in peace processes of settlements being rejected by popular vote after strenuous political negotiations. For this purpose, it investigates and compares how the Annan Plan negotiations in Cyprus and the Good Friday Agreement (GFA) negotiations in Northern Ireland culminated with the acceptance of the latter and the rejection of the former. In doing so, it effectively bridges an existing gap in academic research and literature. Research and theory on peace negotiations and mediation has traditionally focused on uncovering how the process helped the political leaders sitting at the negotiations table reduce military tensions, improve relationships, and come to different types of agreements. It had not yet considered referendum results as a crucial outcome of contemporary peace negotiation processes. Existing research on referendums, on the other hand, traditionally studies voting behaviours through public opinion polls and surveys, or the analysis of referendum campaigns, seldom considering how they are shaped by negotiation processes.

The findings support existing claims that inclusive and participatory negotiation processes can foster support for the peace process, adding that they can deeply shape peace settlement referendum experiences and outcomes. It argues that referendums are unsuitable for traditional secretive and exclusive peace negotiation practices that fail to educate and engage the public. The contribution is novel in arguing that, as a tool of democratic politics, peace settlement referendums need to be preceded by inclusive negotiations that involve a broad spectrum of political stakeholders and civil society and that, therefore, when referendums are used to seal a peace settlement, the entirety of its negotiation process needs to be adapted from the start.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
Uncontrolled keywords: Negotiations, Peace, Settlement, Referendum, Annan Plan, Good Friday Agreement, Cyprus, Norther Ireland
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
SWORD Depositor: System Moodle
Depositing User: System Moodle
Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2017 13:33 UTC
Last Modified: 01 Jan 2020 00:00 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/63870 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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