Status (Prestige)

Who Speaks and Who Listens?

Why are some countries more active in “shaming” others publicly? When states engage in naming and shaming towards one another’s performance in human rights, it is easily assumed that states with more capabilities and better human rights conditions would actively name and shame abusers. However, according to the previous research, states do not always shame abusers; states are more favorable and lenient to their friends. Building on this notion, I argue that the decision to shame another country publicly is also based on concerns with relative status in the international system as they participate in the process. By observing the United Nations Universal Periodic Review (UPR), I find a curvilinear relationship between a state’s status and its shaming behaviors in UPR. States with middle status are more eager to participate, and if they are making recommendations, they tend to make more demanding ones.

Nuclear Proliferation and the Quest for Prestige

States and leaders pursue nuclear technology, including weapons technology, for military and economic reasons. But other, immaterial reasons, also appear as reasons for establishing national nuclear programs. Anedoctal evidence and statements from leaders suggest enhancing one country’s prestige or status was a motive for developing nuclear technology. This means that leaders of these countries considered nuclear technology not only for defensive purposes, but also for status-enhancing purposes. Nevertheless, does acquisition of sensitive nuclear technology actually increases international status? Moreover, once states acquire sensitive nuclear technology, can states increase their stock in the international community by cooperating with the nonproliferation regime and being perceived as responsible custodians of nuclear technology? From this research, we expect to find whether there is any correlation between nuclear technology acquisition and international status, and whether, as a nuclear actor, being perceived as a responsible party to the nonproliferation regime also increases international status.