Trade and foreign policy attitudes
This forty-seven-country survey focuses on attitudes toward two major participants in the international trading system, the United States and China. The study tests the liberal international relations theory that trade influences whether we view others as friendly or threatening, and the idea that the benefits of trade and the threat of losing them will foster friendly attitudes and an aversion to conflict among these people.
Does trade influence whether individuals view other states as friendly or threatening? Liberal theory implies that it should, but the individual-level implications of the liberal argument are rarely tested. Trade should influence individual attitudes more strongly where trade is more economically important. International trade also creates both winners and losers within the trading states, and the foreign policy attitudes of these winners and losers should differ. The authors test hypotheses drawn from this line of argument using a forty-seven-country survey conducted by the Pew Global Attitudes project. They find some evidence that exports but not imports reduce hostile foreign policy attitudes. They find little support for the claim that the trade interests indicated by factor ownership influence attitudes toward trading partners in this broad cross-national sample. On the other hand, attitudes toward trade and foreign direct investment are correlated with broader foreign policy attitudes in the way liberal theory suggests. The authors conclude that there is reason to believe that trade influences individual foreign policy attitudes but that factor ownership does not provide an adequate account of individual interests in international trade in most cases.
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Katja B. Kleinberg, & Benjamin O. Fordham (2010). Trade and Foreign Policy Attitudes Journal of Conflict Resolution : 10.1177/0022002710364128