Middle Power Diplomacy
Inaugural Edgardo Boeninger Memorial Lecture by Professor the Hon Gareth Evans, Chancellor of The Australian National University, President Emeritus of the International Crisis Group and former Foreign Minister of Australia, Chile Pacific Foundation, Santiago, 29 June 2011
Edgardo Boeninger is one of those figures whom any country in the world would be proud to claim as a native son. Engineer, economist, political scientist, educationalist and politician, he was a key player in Chile’s transition back to democracy after the harrowing years of military dictatorship, not only playing a central internal political role in the first post-Pinochet administration, of Patricio Aylwin, and in the Concertacion negotiations leading up to it, but also, during the transition period and subsequently, being a lucid voice in Foreign Affairs and other major international publications explaining Chile to the world.
My own relationship with Edgardo Boeninger was more fleeting than I would have liked, confined to a number of meetings with him in Australia and Chile and elsewhere, mainly back in the mid-1990s when I was Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade and he was Minister Secretary-General of the Presidency then President of the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC), in the context of our common passion for building new regional economic cooperation architecture and in particular our joint efforts to securing Chile’s membership of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation APEC, which came to happy fruition in 1994.
What I took away from all those encounters was the perception of Don Edgardo as both quintessential statesman and quintessential gentleman: a man of consummate competence, professionalism, integrity and real human decency, who had a powerful sense not only of the immediate national interests of his own country and its people, but also of what was needed to make the wider world safer, saner, more just and more prosperous.
I feel deeply honoured and privileged to have been invited by the Chile Pacific Foundation to give this inaugural lecture in Edgardo Boeninger’s memory. I have long had something of a sentimental attachment to this country for two quite different reasons. First, because of the admirable way in which a flourishing, human rights respecting, democracy has been recreated out of the ashes of 1973, and the – what was to me and other young idealists of my generation around the world – the profoundly shocking military overthrow and death of Salvador Allende (events which led among other things, as most of you will know, to President Michelle Bachelet spending some time as a young woman living in Australia). And secondly, because this was the birthplace, in Valparaiso in 1867, of Australia’s (and in fact the world’s) first Labor Prime Minister in 1904, John Christian Watson, whose father was a Chilean seaman (rather easier for Australians to accept than his mother being a New Zealander!).
I am not at all sure that what I may done personally for Chile, or for Australia-Chile relations, remotely compares to Chris Watson’s involuntary natal contribution, or is remotely enough to justify the honour of this invitation, any more than it was enough to justify the award to me in 1999 – which I really treasure – of the Chilean Order of Merit. But I am touched that you have thought of me, and will do my best to justify my presence by talking about a subject which I’m sure would have engaged Don Edgardo: the contribution that countries like ours, who are never going to have enough political, military or economic clout to force our will or preferences on others, can do to make the world a better place.
The idea of “middle powers” – as distinct from great or major powers on the one hand, and small powers on the other – being potentially significant actors in international affairs, has been traced back to Jan Smuts writing about the League of Nations in 1918 (and more adventurously to the Archbishop of Milan in the 16th century, or even Thomas Aquinas in the 13th) 1 but it really only came into its own with Canada’s firm embrace of the concept after 1945. Since then it has waxed and waned in political useage, and in the academic literature.
The high point for academic attention was a flurry of books and journal articles in the 1980s and 1990s – largely stimulated, it seems, by the very visible activism of Australia, Canada and Norway in those decades – but not much has been written in more recent years about either middle powers, or the accompanying concept of “middle power diplomacy”. That probably reflects the reality of political developments in the two most commonly identified middle powers, Australia and Canada, with the election of the conservative governments of John Howard in 1996 and Stephen Harper in 2006, neither of whom had anything like their predecessors’ commitment to either middle power language or the international activism that went with it.
It may also reflect the reality that most analytical attention in recent years has been focused on some rather dramatic movements which have been occurring at the tectonic plate level, with the rise of China to potentially challenge the U.S., and – importantly, though not on the same scale of significance – the new assertiveness on the international stage of the other “BRICS” (Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa). But all that said, middle power language has never disappeared entirely. It has been kept alive, to take just one example, by the “Middle Powers Initiative” (MPI), a prominent international NGO coalition working primarily through the twenty or so states it identifies as middle powers to achieve momentum for nuclear disarmament. And it is now very much back in favour in Australia with its strong embrace by Prime Miniter, now Foreign Minister, Kevin Rudd following the return of Labor to power in 2007.
My own strong view is that the concept of middle powers, and especially “middle power diplomacy”, remains highly relevant and useful, most of all in identifying ways in which countries that don’t on the face of it have what it takes to change the world can nonetheless make a major contribution to doing so. And I put both Australia and Chile in that category. In the remainder of this lecture I will try to spell out what is distinctive and important about middle power diplomacy and to identify what factors contribute most to its effective conduct.
Trying to define “middle powers” with any precision, and coming up with a list of, say, twenty or thirty or maybe more countries that would command universal acceptance as such, is an exercise fraught with peril. Objective criteria like GDP, population size, physical size and military capability can be no more than starting points. For example Australia, which would be on everyone’s list, ranks only 50th in the world on population size, although it is 13th on GDP; Norway, which would be on nearly everyone’s list, is 117th on population, but jumps to 25th on GDP, and 2nd in the world on GDP per capita. Chile, which is on some lists – certainly mine – but not others, is listed 60th in population terms, and does not pick up much ground on the economic front, ranking 44th in GDP terms.
Given the problems of balancing out these competing wholly objective criteria, one approach (as adopted for example by the Middle Powers Initiative) is to supplement these metrics with more subjective criteria, such as perceived economic and political significance, or perhaps – much more normatively – the degree of general respect such countries command. But such criteria, particularly any normative ones, by their very nature, are wholly unlikely to command general consensus. And perceptions will vary anyway according to context: for example Australia may be perceived as a major power in its own South Pacific region – albeit one having increasing difficulty in getting its way these days – but not in the wider world.
Even if one could reach complete agreement on a single set of ordering criteria which established a clear hierarchy among the world’s 192 UN member states, a further problem that arises is where one draws the cut-off lines north and south of the “middle power” group. Where is the line to be drawn between middle powers and “small” powers? And where is it to be drawn between middle powers and those who have greater stature or inherent influence?
The initial lists of middle powers that started appearing in the 1980s 2 tended to incorporate countries like China, France, the UK and Japan, with the top group containing only the “great powers”, viz. the U.S. and Soviet Union. As I for one argued at the time, a more intuitively acceptable approach would be to distinguish middle powers not just from “great” powers but from “major” powers, which list would include China, France and the UK at least because of their permanent membership of the Security Council, and Japan, India and Germany as well 3. If I were writing that now I would have to add at least Brazil to the “major powers” category, and perhaps – although rather more arguably – South Africa and Nigeria as well. But again there is never likely to be ready consensus achievable about any such judgement.
These difficulties have led some writers to suggest that the best way of defining middle powers is by reference to their behaviour: what really matters is not what countries are, in terms of various quantitative measures, but what they do – for example, “their tendency to pursue multilateral solutions to international problems, their tendency to embrace compromise positions in international disputes, and their tendency to embrace notions of ‘good international citizenship’ to guide their diplomacy” 4. This approach is, I think, getting pretty warm when it comes to defining the key characteristics of what we might define as “middle power diplomacy”, as I will come to shortly. But one doesn’t have to have the intelligence of an Edgardo Boeninger to see that it’s not very helpful in defining “middle powers” themselves, because the argument is essentially circular – describing as middle powers those states which behave in a way characteristic of states who are already considered to be middle powers…
Moreover, if you adopt a behavioural definition, what do you say about a state like Australia, which is universally regarded as a middle power, when it stops behaving like one? Does it then stop being one? When the conservative government of John Howard was in office from 1996 to 2007, “middle power” language was explicitly rejected and disappeared entirely from our diplomatic vocabulary: for Foreign Minister Alexander Downer we were a “pivotal” power, and it was demeaning to suggest otherwise. As he put it on one occasion, “My predecessor Gareth Evans talked about Australia as a ‘middle power’ and Labor seems to have a middle child complex when it comes to our place in the world. We are not ‘middling’ or ‘average’ or ‘insignificant” …we are a considerable power and a significant country” 5. Well, if only talking could make it so…
For reasons which by now should be obvious, I don’t think there is an enormous degree of utility in trying to get an agreed list of who, at any given time, are the world’s middle powers – and whether that list should include countries like Chile as well as more familiar suspects beginning these days with Australia, Canada, the key Scandinavians, a number of other Europeans from the Netherlands to Turkey, Asians like Indonesia, South Korea and Malaysia, and Latins like Argentina and Colombia.
But difficulty in defining middle powers does not, and should not, stop us talking about “middle power diplomacy”. There is real utility in doing so, both descriptively and prescriptively: this language accurately describes the way in which a number of states have in fact conducted themselves, and I believe it is a useful way of encouraging some states who don’t normally think of themselves as international movers and shakers to do more.
Middle power diplomacy, is, in short, the kind of diplomacy which can, and should, be practised by states which are not big or strong enough, either in their own region or the wider world, to impose their policy preferences on anyone else; but who do recognize that that there are international policy tasks which need to be accomplished if the world around them is to be safer, saner, more just and more prosperous (with all the potential this has, in turn, to affect their own interests); and who have sufficient capacity and credibility to be able to advance those tasks.
Middle power diplomacy has been exercised in a variety of ways over the years. An effort has been made by some writers to develop a typology of middle power activism distinguishing on one axis between “diffuse” and “discrete” initiatives – i.e. concentration on many different smaller things or a handful of big things; and on another axis between “heroic” and “routine” styles in advancing those initiatives – doing things in an ambitious and risk-taking, as distinct from more cautious, way 6. I was rather pleased to find Australia being identified by these writers as generally engaged not just at the specifically-focused but the heroic ends of these spectrums, by contrast with the efforts of countries like Canada and Norway, which were being typecast as generally more diffuse and routine.
But when one looks back over the historical record it is hard to make any such general characterizations stick. Heroic things have been done diplomatically when the times have allowed it, and countries’ own governments have been keen to make their mark (as was certainly the case for Australia, Canada and a number of other countries in the 1980s and ‘90s); quieter roles, or sometimes no role at all, have been played when external constraints weighed heavily, or relevant governments have been inward looking (as was largely the case with the long Menzies and Howard conservative years in Australia, and is becoming ever more evidently the case with the Harper years in Canada).
In the early post-World War II years, to focus for the moment just on these two countries, both Australia and Canada concentrated heavily, and very visibly, on building international institutional structures that would, both by their existence and their mode of operation, give weight to middle power and other voices, and dilute some of the authority that would otherwise be exercised by the U.S. and the other then great powers. Thus Australia’s Dr Evatt’s efforts with the founding of the UN to strengthen the role of the General Assembly at the expense of the Security Council. And thus the role of both countries in building the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), strengthening regimes such as the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT), and developing major programs in the global South like the Colombo Plan.
During the 1950s and ‘60s, and continuing for most of the later Cold War years, it was difficult to maintain that kind of proactive approach. Canada – unlike Australia for most of this time – did remain active internationally active, but its focus shifted more, under Lester Pearson and for most of the time under Pierre Trudeau, towards playing a relatively quiet middle-man role as a mediator and conciliator, helping to defuse some East-West tensions and to put out various smaller conflict brushfires elsewhere. Much effort was also put into giving backroom technical support in the negotiation of complex international regimes like the Law of the Sea treaty.
In the 1980s trade issues came to the fore, with Australia initiating in 1986, in the context of the Uruguay Round, the Cairns Group of agricultural exporters, a classic middle power diplomatic lobbying exercise in which Chile played an important role throughout; and then, in 1989, APEC, which was very dear to Edgardo Boeninger’s heart, as I have already remarked, and a forum in which our two countries have worked closely together since the early 1990s.
The late 1980s, through to the change of government in 1996, was a period of intense international activism for Australia across not just trade and economic issues but a broad range of environmental and security issues, in which – taking advantage of the new fluidity in the international political environment associated with the end of the Cold War – we played, for example, major roles in initiating bans on mining and oil drilling in the Antarctic, the UN peace plan for Cambodia, the ASEAN Regional Forum as a major new security dialogue forum, and generating international debate on the peace and security role of the UN; in the arms control and disarmament area, those roles extended to establishing the Australia Group and concluding the Chemical Weapons Convention, and sponsoring the Canberra Commission on the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.
While I think it is fair to say that Australia was seen as the leading advocate and practitioner of middle power diplomacy during this period, we were by no means the only players in this game, with Norway, for example, being particularly active in initiating the Oslo peace process in the Middle East, and Canada in leading the charge against South African apartheid. And over the next decade, through to the mid-2000s, as Australia dropped out of the picture, these two countries continued to play leadership roles on issues like the Ottawa-initiated Landmines Treaty and the Oslo-initiated Cluster Munitions Treaty, again classic exercises of international diplomatic leadership by non-major powers.
Chile itself gave a particularly clear example during this period of just how important a diplomatic role can be played by determined small-to-middle-sized powers if circumstances arise which enable them to exercise leverage. Usually that leverage is acquired through the persuasive accumulation of numbers, but in 2003 Chile went it alone – using its pivotal vote in the UN Security Council to deny the U.S. the vote it wanted, and the moral authority that would have gone with it, to specifically authorise its invasion of Iraq, notwithstanding the absence of compelling evidence of either weapons of mass destruction possession or terrorist links. It may be that there are some differences of view in this country, but from an international perspective I know that the principled way in which President Ricardo Lagos held the line under fierce pressure has been regarded as one of Chile’s finest hours.
In recent years the wheel has turned again in terms of the most visible examples of middle power diplomacy. Canada played a classic role in initiating in 2000 the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty, in response to the continuing horror of genocide and other mass atrocity crimes which had shocked the world’s conscience in Rwanda and the Balkans during the 1990s, and in leading the charge to see the new concept of “the responsibility to protect” unanimously adopted by the UN General Assembly at head of state and government level in 2005. But since then, under an inward-looking new government underwhelmed by the liberal internationalist style of most of its predecessors, leadership on this issue has been assumed by others, including the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia and – in Africa – Rwanda and Ghana. There is an active “Group of Friends of RtoP” in New York, in which I am pleased to say Chile is a key member.
Australia under the Labor Government elected in 2007 has bounced back into a self-consciously activist role, with Prime Minister and now Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd describing us as “a middle power with regional and global interests” 7 and busily engaged in constructing institutions and policy on everything from the G20 and response to the global financial crisis, to climate change at Copenhagen, the creation of new security and economic architecture in the form of an expanded East Asia Summit, to responding to the events in Libya and Syria, to re-energising the debate on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament. (Although I developed as Foreign Minister something of a reputation for what some rather unkindly called “initiativitis”, I sense that crown is rather now slipping to my successor!) The nuclear disarmament area is not one to bear quick fruit, as someone with even President Barack Obama’s influence is discovering, but it is an area where Australia’s contribution might, hopefully, prove quite helpful over the long haul, with our sponsorship of a successor to the path-breaking Canberra Commission 8, and recent establishment of a ministerial-level Cross-Regional Group on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament, another classic middle power advocacy group of ten countries, of which Chile is again a key member 9.
Are there any common threads running through all the disparate activity by various countries that I have been describing? I think there are, both in terms of method and motivation.
The characteristic method of middle power diplomacy is coalition building with “like-minded” countries. It usually also involves “niche diplomacy”, which means concentrating resources in specific areas best able to generate returns worth having, rather than trying to cover the field 10. Countries which are not powerful enough in most circumstances to impose their will may be persuasive enough to have like-minded others see their point of view, and to act accordingly.
The concept of “like-mindedness” has been changing in interesting ways. In the past the countries in whose company Australia certainly felt most comfortable were those sharing the abiding values of Western liberal democracy, the living standards of advanced industrial societies, and preferably speaking English as well: Britain, the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, and occasionally the Scandinavians and some other West Europeans. And other countries – I would assume the Latin Americans for a start – had their equivalent comfort groupings. But for all of us these days, the term “like-minded” much more often describes those who, whatever their prevailing value systems, share specific interests and are prepared to work together to do something about them. In an age where we are all preoccupied with the group of transnational problem issues that Kofi Annan described as “problems without passports” – from climate change to health pandemics to terrorism and the like – many more interests are seen as shared than was the case before, and many more countries are seen as potential allies in cooperating to protect and advance them.
The kind of coalitions that Australia and others have built in recent years, in the pursuit of what I have been describing as middle power diplomacy – whether one is talking about the Cairns Group or APEC, or the Friends of RtoP or the Cross-Regional Group on Nuclear Disarmament or anything else – are by no means confined in their membership to middle-power countries, to the extent that these can ever be defined. They often include great or major powers, and those with very much less influence as well; and the memberships keep changing. The point of middle power diplomacy is not so much who is embraced by it, as how the process of change is initiated and carried through. Australian coalition building, like that of others, has been inherently eclectic: we have sought to build in each case the kind of alliance most suited to the particular issue in question.
The characteristic motivation for middle power diplomacy is what I have long described as “good international citizenship”, a belief in the utility, and necessity, of acting cooperatively with others in solving international problems, particularly those problems which by their nature cannot be solved by any country acting alone, however big and powerful. The crucial point to appreciate about good international citizenship is that this is not something separate and distinct from the pursuit of national interests; it is not some kind of foreign policy equivalent of boy scout good deeds. On the contrary “being, and being seen to be, a good international citizen” should itself be seen as a third category of national interest, right up there alongside the traditional duo of security and economic interests 11.
The argument is that, by being seriously committed to cooperative international problem solving, national interest is advanced two ways. First, through simple reciprocity: my help for you today in solving your drugs and terrorism problem might reasonably lead you to be willing to help solve my environmental problem tomorrow. And secondly, through reputational benefit: the perception of being a country willing to take principled stands for other than immediately self-interested reasons does no harm at all to one’s own commercial and wider political agendas.
What does it take for middle power diplomacy – motivated as I have described, and carried out by the kinds of methods I have been describing – to be really effective? There seem to me to be four factors primarily involved, which I would describe as opportunity, capacity, creativity and credibility.
First, there has to be a real opportunity for potentially effective action. There is no prestige, or likely result, in enthusiastically pursuing ideas which are premature, over-ambitious, or for some other reason unlikely to generate any significant body of support. An example I can remember was Australia’s canvassing of the possibility of sanctions against Myanmar in the early 1990s. On the other hand the Cairns Group, APEC and the ASEAN Regional Forum (and now the EAS), the UN peace plan for Cambodia, the Antarctic wilderness park initiative, the G20, the responsibility to protect, and the Ottawa and Oslo treaties are all examples of ideas advanced by ourselves and others whose time had clearly come.
Secondly, there has to be a sufficient physical capacity to follow the issue through. This implies a certain minimum of physical resources, including a sufficiently wide network of diplomatic posts, which it may be difficult for any country smaller than a middle-sized one to match. It also means that for anyone other than a major power, and maybe even for some of those, there will be a limit to the number of major issues that can be simultaneously pursued: selective “niche” diplomacy, while often good tactics, is also compelled by realistic necessity. Resources simply have to be concentrated where they are likely to have the most useful impact. The capacity to follow an issue through also involves energy and stamina. Many good ideas, well capable of implementation, fall by the wayside in international affairs simply because institutions, or the individuals who constitute them, tire. One widely acknowledged reason for the impact made, for example, by Australia’s peace plan for Cambodia was the sheer persistence with which, over a long period, the proposal was followed through at both official and ministerial level.
Thirdly, there has to be in most cases a degree of intellectual imagination and creativity applied to the issue – an ability to see a way through impasses and to lead, if not by force of authority, then at least by force of ideas. The application of physical resources to a problem without accompanying ideas is unlikely to result in anything much more than the appearance of activity. Of course, creativity and imagination are not the sole prerogative of middle power diplomacy; nor should they be assumed to exist in the case of any particular state seeking to practice this kind of diplomacy. But the point is that what countries which are not major powers may lack in economic, political or military clout, they can often make up with quick and thoughtful diplomatic footwork. And resolution of just about any significant problem in international affairs – be it bilateral or multilateral in character – needs just that.
And fourthly, effective middle power diplomacy involves credibility on the part of the country applying it. The mix of ingredients here will vary from case to case. Perceived independence from the influence of larger powers will often be one such ingredient. The maintenance of traditional alliance relationships (such as Australia’s with the United States) is not in issue here – rather simply the need for any country aspiring to play an active diplomatic role of its own to make clear that it is not acting as a mere cipher or stalking horse for some protector, and that its policy choices and priorities are entirely its own.
The maintenance of credibility is also crucially dependent on avoiding any charge of hypocrisy: any country which preaches abroad what it fails to practice at home cannot be expected to be taken very seriously for very long. Thus Australia’s domestic commitment to internationalising our own economy was critical to our credibility in multilateral trade negotiations and APEC; similarly any continuation of our poor race relations record in the past would have made it very difficult for us to be heard internationally on apartheid.
Great and major powers have had a long-ingrained belief – that is only gradually changing as the realities of a complex, interdependent and rather more opinionated world catch up with them – that it is really only they who matter in the international scheme of things. Some of their diplomats manage to conceal these sentiments better than others but – as I have had plenty of occasions to experience over the years, and I suspect there will be a number in this audience in the same position – the belief dies hard that while small and medium sized states, especially those that are failed, failing or otherwise irresponsible, are undoubtedly capable of causing major global problems, their positive contribution is mostly useless, sometimes irritating and at best marginal.
But the truth of the matter is that, when the kind of conditions I have described are satisfied, lesser mortals conducting middle power diplomacy can certainly on occasion accomplish what great or major power diplomacy will find difficult. To take just some of the major issues with which I was involved, it is generally acknowledged that APEC would have had much more difficulty getting off the ground if the U.S. or Japan had been its instigator: each side may have feared the worst of the other, and the smaller powers may well have felt their own interests were at risk. Similarly with the Chemical Weapons Convention: as the U.S. itself acknowledged, it needed someone who wouldn’t frighten the horses to make the running. And with the Cambodian conflict, Australia’s ability to talk comfortably to every country involved in the Cambodian conflict, exploring a new UN focused approach to its settlement and building a new coalition for action out of some very unpromising components, owed much to the fact that we were not carrying any great or major power baggage, had no axes to grind, and no particular security or economic interests of our own to protect.
Most exercises in middle power diplomacy will not produce especially spectacular results. Most of the time, trying to achieve progress on problems of the global commons and securing other global public goods like free trade – with all the free-rider, weak-link, sovereign-preference and other constraints on collective action that they involve – involves very slow boring through very hard boards. But the cooperative internationalist approach that is at the heart of middle power diplomacy is, in the kind of world in which we now live, the only way to solve the world’s problems. And in generating acceptable solutions, countries not of major power status are as well equipped as anyone else, and in a number of cases better equipped, to deliver the goods.
Edgardo Boeninger understood that as well as anyone ever has, and himself played a seminal role in making Chile a voice that counted, especially in trade diplomacy. It was a pleasure to work with him, and may his legacy long continue. Not only in Chile-Australia relations – which are as good as they possibly could be, not least as a result of his own strong personal engagement over so many years – but in the efforts of all of us to make this planet of ours safer, saner, more prosperous and more just.
1. John Ravenhill, “Cycles of Middle Power Activism: Constraint and Choice in Australian and Canadian Foreign Policies”, Australian Journal of International Affairs 52:3, 1998, p 309; Carsten Holbraad, Middle Powers in International Politics (Macmillan, London, 1984), Ch 1.
2. For example, in Holbraad, op cit., pp 89-90.
3. Gareth Evans and Bruce Grant, Australia’s Foreign Relations (Melbourne University Press, 2nd ed 1995), p 397 fn 1. Some of the other text in this lecture draws directly on Ch 19 of this book.
4. Andrew F. Cooper, Richard A. Higgott and Kim Richard Nossal, Relocating Middle Powers: Australia and Canada in a Changing World Order (UBC Press, Vancouver, 1993), p.19.
5. Alexander Downer, “Should Australia Think Big or Small in Foreign Policy”, Speech to Centre for Independent Studies, Sydney, 10 July 2006, accessible at www.foreignminister.gov.au/speeches/2006/060710_bigorsmall.html
6. Cooper, Higgott and Nossal, op cit, Ch 1.
7. See, e.g., Hon Kevin Rudd, “Australia’s Foreign Policy Interests in the Middle East”, Speech to the National Press Club, Canberra, 22 February 2011: accessible at www.foreignminister.gov.au/speeches/2011/kr_sp_110222.html
8. The International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament, co-chaired by Gareth Evans and Yoriko Kawaguchi, whose report Eliminating Nuclear Threats: A Practical Agenda for Global Policymakers, was published in 2009: see www.icnnd.org
9. Its members are currently Australia, Canada, Chile, Germany, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, Poland, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. See the group’s “Berlin n Statement by Foreign Ministers on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation”, 30 April 2011: accessible at www.dfat.gov.au/security/berlin_statement_110430.html
10. Andrew F. Cooper, ed., Niche Diplomacy: Middle Powers After the Cold War (Macmillan, London 1997); Alan K. Henrikson , “Niche Diplomacy in the World Public Arena: The Global ‘Corners’ of Canada and Norway”, in Jan Melissen, ed., The New Public Diplomacy: Soft Power in International Relations (Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2005).
11. This approach is developed in Evans and Grant, op cit, Ch. 3, and has generated a degree of attention in the literature: see, e.g., Nicholas J. Wheeler and Tim Dunne, “Good International Citizenship: A Third Way for British Foreign Policy”, International Affairs 74:4 (1998) pp.847-70.