International Regime And The Aspect Of Policy Changes In Communication

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The domain of international regimes is enlightened by the social critics as regularized patterns of collaborative behaviour and cooperative interaction among several national states. International regimes also provide significant examples of several international co-operations. The changes of the international communication policy dominated in late 1980s (Windsor, 2016). The international communication regime used to be dominated by the state or private owned monopolies in the communication industry until early. 1980s. Current essay attempts to shed light on the concept of international regime and its association with international communication. The changes in international policies in the advent of 1980s in the light of international regime attempts to identify the overall rubric of the principles that affect global liberalization in the domain of international communication.

International regime

Overview of regime

In order to understand the global politics it is important to understand the indispensible nature of international cooperation. The history of the communication regime is widely associated with regimes in telecommunications, broadcasting and in the postmodern era the electronic commerce. The prominence and importance of the regime theory can be evaluated in accordance with it emergence in US (Baylis et al, 2017). International regimes until late 1970s was not paid much heed in relation to the political economy and the practitioners of this field in place of security relations among the nations and states concentrated on the potency of international regime with the deepening of global independence (Baylis et al, 2017).

Defining international regimes

Looking at the etymology of the word regime, it has been found that the word is of French origin, which indicates authority. Most of the regime theories are associated with the concentration on the cooperation among different states and nations. Along with that some of the theories are also used to evaluate the behest of international government organizations, firms and other non-governmental organizations.

The definition of regime that is widely acknowledged by the scholars comes from Stephen Kranser (1983). According to the Stanford University scholar regimes can be considered primarily as rules, principles, decision making procedure or norms along with the institutions that are either implicitly or explicitly agreed upon by the international players in the issue areas (Baylis et al, 2017). 

Regimes are generally studied in the light of understanding the way of the world or how the world works. As far as the communication regimes are concerned, they are established upon the principles of sovereign interaction in order to emphasize upon the necessity of smooth flow of information among nations and states in order to facilitate the process of international commerce.  

Several aspects of international regime

Theory of regimes

Over the last century, international regime continued to be the primary focus of theoretical debate and empirical research. The existing literature of regime development are mostly classified into four groups and they are:

  • Structuralism: This theory concentrates upon the hegemonic stability and effectively offers the most possible parsimonious explanation of the regime dynamics. The earlier counterpart of the theory only indicated the reasons behind the World economic stability to the existence of a dominant power. Keohane and Nye on the first place in Power and Independence linked regime dynamics to state power (Jönsson, 2017). Kranser also identified structure has the ability to predict the openness of the trading system. Hegemonic interpretations often fail to locate the functions of the hegemons in promulgating the provided set of rules.
  • Strategic and game theoriesGame theory significantly identifies to explain the chief role of co-operation under anarchic conditions in case of force compliance. It also provides an interesting insight in the dimension of strategic interaction’s structure. Application of the particular theoretical approach is significant in revealing the conditions that have the capacity to enable stability and cooperation.
  • Functional theories: The major importance of the functional theories lies in the fact that it explains the institutions and the behaviours in their effects. The theory has important limitations as they can not be considered as causal to the very first place. On the contrary new functionalism is operated through a strong liberal bias.
  • Cognitive theories of knowledge, regimes and ideology: The cognitive approach emphasises on the moot essence of regime and that is it can be fully explained without a specific reference to the ideology and the values of the potential actors and their belief regarding the interdependent issues.

Reason of emergence of the theories

The most important factor that needs to be studied in order to understand the reason behind the emergence of the regime theory, is the historical and the socio economic condition of USA in the end of 1970s. The theory arose with the emerging fear of USA regarding the weakening of the US economic power. The history evidently portrays the moot result of the oil crises and the stagflation and it has worked as one of the potent factors behind its association with the hegemonic decline of USA. Because of its direct association with the hegemonic decline of the country it is often coincided with Reganomics and the solutions to the market based questions.

The use of regimes as defined by Kranser is to controls the external factors and to satisfy the US interest in order to restore their hegemonic domination of the economy (Windsor, 2016). The international regimes became the chief concern of the theoretical debates and empirical studies. 

Analysing the theory

The international regime is often analysed in the light of several theoretical approaches and mostly they are state power, Economic interdependence, Collective understanding and technology. The moot essence of the explanations located in state power is the formation as well as sustenance of state power or the interest of state power. Theories of economic interdependence emphasises on the state mutuality of interests and this to be the concern of the entry analysis. One of the potent examples can be the role of European Commission in arranging to convince the member states to agree on the cooperative measures suggested by the WTO (World Trade Organization). Collective understanding indicates cognitive approach and points out several factors in collective understanding of the socialization of agents and hegemonic ideologies (Brown and Ainley, 2009).

The technological aspect was brought forth by Stephen Kranser in explaining the power driven regime formation and several variation in the international regime. Combination of various conditions of power coming both from states and the essential markets with the help of collective understanding have effectively located the effect of international negotiations in leading variable outcomes for global governance and communication (Singh, 2002).

Changes of policy in communications since 1980

Various changes have occurred in the international policies of communication since 1980. These changes have occurred due to the inclusion of the international regimes in the communication policies. According to these changes the inclusion of the international regimes in the communication policies has made the policies of the communication more subtle. The introduction of regimes have encourages the reduction of the barriers in the information sharing that in turn has increased the flow of information during the communication. The used of the international regimes have initiated mutual and convergent interests towards the involvement of cooperation and achieving of the objectives. The nation-states have been able to fend themselves and help in taking away authority. 

The inclusion of the international regimes has made certain changes in the communication policies by making it more effective to be used by the members of the organisations and various particulars who have agreed to follow upon them. There have been faster changes in the policy making strategies and the decision making strategise due to the changes in the communication policies since 1980. In terms of different sector there have been huge changes in the communication polices that has led to various implication. Some of these changes or impacts according to the international regime in different sectors have been given below (Kim et al, 2014). 

State power: it has been stated that convergence explanation notes that can be used by the state interests will lead to the regime formation in different circumstances. There has been mutual understanding among the neo-liberals and emphasize is given on the commonality of the interests of the people. The actions of the international regimes are collective, thus it became easier for the small group of nation-states to undertake the policies. 

Economic interdependence: the inclusion of the international regimes has led to the various changes in the positive manner. There has been increase in the adjustments that was mutual in terms of the interests of the people. The inclusion of regimes has enabled international transactions and exchange much easier due to the market’s inability to conduct procedures on their own. 

Collective understanding: there have been changes in the telecommunications since 1980 due to the inclusion of the international regimes. This has led to the acceptance of monopoly model of telecommunication due to the collective understanding of the engineers that has occurred as a result of the inclusion of the international regimes in the communication policies. 

Technology: the inclusion of the international regime has led to the technical changes in the rationale of the telecommunication model. This led to the requirement of huge investments due to the changes in the models (Wang, 2014). 

Analysis of the policy changes in the light of international regime

The effectiveness of the study of international regimes has been considered an important part and prospect of international relations. In the viewpoint of Eberlein et al. (2014), it helps in the demonstration of an ideology to put an effort in understanding the conditions and definite means by which states cooperate with one another under the potential influence of the variables of international regime. Majority of the research traditions have intended to put enough input into their perspective and prospective understanding regarding the knowledge of international regimes. However, the concept and ideologies of international regimes have faced several obstacles over the years, but has managed to be a significant contribution and continued to be one of the premium aspects of literature. 

Furthermore, the realists have contended the fact that, the nature of anarchy in the international system tends to cause states to be concerned primarily regarding the relative gains. These relative gains include their position in the other prevalent states within the premises of this definite system. Therefore, as per commented by Odell (2014), it has been found that, consequently, it so happens that, the states are often found to be reluctant to attain an entry into any definite agreement, which might leave them in an awkward situation in comparison to the other states. However, inspite of being aware about such potential risks that are associated with the entry into the agreements that are cooperative in nature. 

Regime theory and hegemonic stability 

In the viewpoint of Telò (2014), it is to be noted that, since 1980, a number of policies were changed due to the fact that, new legislative ideas need to be implemented. As per the hegemonic stability theory (HST), it can be evidently said that, the powerful states are able to effective change the entire global system. The entire situation stays under control unless a heterogeneous development of power between the two powerful states adds up to an unsatisfied state. Furthermore, if the states disagree about their powers, then it is likely to happen that, conflicts might take place. On the other hand, it is worth a mention that, the aspects that are closely involved with hegemonic stability that are associated with the structure of institutional post war have often been found to be underwritten by the definite hegemonic power of the US (Levy et al. 2016).

Later Krasner theory 

The third world wants proper control and power as much as they want wealth. Thus, the definition that is being propagated by Krasner is closely connected with the rational choice of American International Relations. On the other hand, in the viewpoint of Gilpin (2016), it also states the facts that, the third world countries are intending to negotiate their position within the international institutions. They are highly influenced by the domestic factors that are involved within the premises of the international relations of America, which solely took place due to the economic vulnerability. It is to be noted that, the composition and connotations of administrative reforms in each facet of the society. These aspects are however inseparable from the formation and nature of the state. On the other hand, the emergence of fundamental and ideological shift in paradigm in the 1980s saw the development of thinking from a state centred to a characteristically market driven prospect. As per commented by (Saniand Mohammadzadeh, 2016), it had a significant impact on the definite perspectives that were substantially perceived out of the development of sustenance and efficiency of the administration. 

Challenges to rules of ITU

It can be evidently stated that, in the absence of international regimes, it so happens that, the telecommunication between the states of the world needs to have proper and appropriation of governance by the application of several bilateral agreements, which would become complex for the sole purpose of administering across the globe. When an international regime serves ITU services simultaneously, it is likely to happen that, it is important to attain a proper standardisation of telecommunication across the states. 

On the other hand, it can also be said that, under the tremendous pressures that are generated by the commercial and lobbying practices of their definite firms of international regime, the developed countries started violating the rules that are propagated by ITU. In the viewpoint of Alleyne (2016), the reason behind transgressing the rules and regulations of the ITU in order to make their current system frayed  in comparison to their new policies at the beginning of 1990s. Furthermore, it can also be propagated that, the national monopolies began competing in each other’s markets by the means of creating a provision for including callback and third country calling. However, the advent of the global market in telecommunications services pitted ITU against WTO over the appropriation of the regulations that are generally imposed by the telecommunication sector (El-Moghazi rt al. 2017)


Therefore, it can be concluded by stating the fact that, the perceptions and ideologies that are associated with international regimes has managed to become one of the mainstream and prospective aspects in the literature in international relations. However, it has often been found that, international regimes and the variables that are involved in it often tend to be narrow and it only looks at the facets of the international institutions. On the other hand, the regimes that are promulgated by an international institution can be fulfilled and altered by the nullification of the actions of the most influential members that are taken unilaterally or bilaterally. 

Furthermore, it can also be said that, the concept of international regime needs to be wider. It must be taken into account the structural power of international regime can also be an influential aspect in the fundamental ideologies that are associated with it. Therefore, the states can prepare and test a proper data protocol, which will comprise of all the legal factors and perspectives that are associated with international regimes.