Beyond Economics and Security: Strategic Export Control Practices in Advanced Countries
Pryor, Crystal Diana
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How do like-minded countries decide which sensitive technologies they will export to countries of concern? When the economic and security stakes are high, what factors contribute to effective strategic export control policy? To answer these questions, my study focuses on the routine, domestic, and bureaucratic implementation of multilateral and national–level export controls. The optimist assumes that countries, or at least allies, engage in similar export control practices. Yet the reality is unlikely to be so simple. If like-minded countries do not implement export controls similarly, we need to know why. To create a more coherent strategic export control policy among the advanced industrial democracies, we must start with a better understanding of the factors that drive officials’ decision-making. I therefore examine US, UK, and Japanese exports of high-tech, militarily sensitive exports to China—the most strategically significant importer—from the late 1990s to the present. In examining these cases, this study combines insights from bureaucratic politics and psychology in a novel way to shine light on how countries resolve competing pulls from economics, security, and politics. It also provides information useful to researchers and governments interested in the implementation of multilateral policy. My findings highlight the causes of variation in domestic implementation of multilateral policies in the hopes that states can better prevent grave security threats, including weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferation.
- Political science