Germany’s Post-Merkel Foreign Policy

Katharina Emschermann and Kai Oppermann discuss Europe’s “top risk” in 2021 – the German Federal Election and its foreign policy implications.

In the third episode of the “Berlin Security Beat”, the Centre for International Security's podcast, Dr. Katharina Emschermann, Deputy Director at the Centre, speaks with Kai Oppermann, Professor for International Politics at the Chemnitz University of Technology and an expert on German Foreign Policy and the dynamics of coalition governments.

They discuss the German Federal Election and its foreign policy implications, a potential coalition between the conservative CDU and the Greens, Germany as “civilian power”, and the reasons for Germany's non-participation in the 2011 Libya intervention.

Listen to the episode: 


Bremmer, Ian/ Kupchan, Cliff (2021): Risk 9: Europe after Merkel, in: Eurasia Group: Top Risks 2021, https://www.eurasiagroup.net/live-post/top-risks-2021-risk-9-europe-after-merkel

Brummer, Klaus/ Oppermann, Kai (2014): Patterns of Junior Partner Influence on the Foreign Policy of Coalition Governments, in: British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 16 (4), 555-571. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1111/1467-856X.12025?journalCode=bpia

Bulmer, Simon/ Paterson, William E. (2019): Germany and the European Union: Europe's Reluctant Hegemon? Macmillan International Higher Education, London. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09644008.2019.1572958

Collier, David (2011): Understanding Process Tracing, in: Political Science and Politics, 4 (2011), 823-30, https://polisci.berkeley.edu/sites/Understanding_Process_Tracing.pdf

Franke, Ulrike (2021): Why a ‘Black-Green’ German government could finally create a coherent defence policy, in: Note From Berlin, 01/19/2021, https://ecfr.eu/article/why-a-black-green-german-government-could-finally-create-a-coherent-defence-policy/

Gaskarth, Jamie/ Oppermann, Kai (2019): Clashing Traditions: German Foreign Policy in a New Era, in: International Studies Perspectives, Online First (2019). https://academic.oup.com/isp/advance-article/doi/10.1093/isp/ekz017/5581524

Gassert, Philipp (2017): Wie man eine Bundestagwahl verliert [How to Lose a German Federal Election], in: Die Zeit, https://www.zeit.de/politik/deutschland/2017-09/wahlentscheidung-bundestagswahl-eu-fluechtlinge-vertrauen-d17

Harnisch, Sebastian (2015): Deutschlands Rolle in der Libyen-Intervention: Führung, Gefolgschaft und das angebliche Versagen der Regierung Merkel [Germany’s Role in the Libya Intervention: Leadership, Fealty and the Alleged Failure of the Merkel Administration], in: Kneuer, Marianne (Hg.): Standortbestimmung Deutschlands: Innere Verfasstheit und internationale Verantwortung, Baden-Baden, 85-122. https://www.nomos-elibrary.de/10.5771/9783845252841/standortbestimmung-deutschlands-innere-verfasstheit-und-internationale-verantwortung

Kirste, Knut/ Maull, Hanns W. (1996): Zivilmacht und Rollentheorie [Civilian Power and Role Theory], in: Zeitschrift für Internationale Beziehungen 3(2), 283-312. https://www.jstor.org/stable/40844107?seq=1

Maull, Hanns W. (2000): Germany and the Use of Force: Still a ‘Civilian Power’? in: Survival, vol. 42, no. 2 (Summer 2000): 56—80. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/238401888_Germany_and_the_Use_of_Force_Still_a_Civilian_Power

Oppermann, Kai (2012): National Role Conceptions, Domestic Constraints and the New ‘Normalcy’ in German Foreign Policy: the Eurozone Crisis, Libya and Beyond, in: German Politics, 21 (4), 502-519. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09644008.2012.748268

Oppermann, Kai (2019): Between a Rock and a Hard Place? Navigating Domestic and International Expectations on German Foreign Policy, in: German Politics, 28 (3) (2019), 482-498. http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/76617/3/Between_a_Rock_and_a_Hard_Place-_Kai_Oppermann.pdf

Oppermann, Kai (2019): Koalitionspolitik und nationale Rollenkonzeptionen: Der Stellenwert von Multilateralismus und Antimilitarismus für die „Zivilmacht“ Deutschland [Coalition Politics and Role Conceptions: The Significance of Multilateralism and Anti-Militarism for the „Civilian Power“ Germany], in: Brummer, Klaus/ Kießling, Friedrich (Hg.): Zivilmacht Bundesrepublik?, 273 – 294. https://www.nomos-elibrary.de/koalitionspolitik-und-nationale-rollenkonzeptionen-der-stellenwert-von-multilateralismus-und-antimilitarismus-fuer-die-zivilmacht-deutschland

Smith, Michael E. (1996): Sending the Bundeswehr to the Balkans: The Domestic Politics of Reflexive Multilateralism, in: German Politics & Society, Vol. 14, No. 4 (41), pp. 49-67, https://www.jstor.org/stable/23736427

Tisdall, Simon (2021): 2021: The Story of a Year in 12 Leaders, in: The Guardian, 01/01/2021, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/01/2021-the-story-of-a-year-in-12-leaders


Kai Oppermann’s Favorite Election Movie/Documentary

Levinson, Barry (1997): Wag the Dog, United States: New Line Cinema.

Pennebaker, D. A. and Hegedus, Chris (1993): The War Room, United States: McEttinger Films/ Pennebaker Associates.

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