International Relations & Security

Schmidt, Averell, and Kathryn Sikkink. 2018. “Partners in Crime: An Empirical Evaluation of the CIA Rendition, Detention, and Interrogation Program.” Perspectives on Politics 16 (4): 1014-1033. Publisher's Version Abstract
In the years following the attacks of 9/11, the CIA adopted a program involving the capture, extraordinary rendition, secret detention, and harsh interrogation of suspected terrorists in the war on terror. As the details of this program have become public, a heated debate has ensued, focusing narrowly on whether or not this program “worked” by disrupting terror plots and saving American lives. By embracing such a narrow view of the program’s efficacy, this debate has failed to take into account the broader consequences of the CIA program. We move beyond current debates by evaluating the impact of the CIA program on the human rights practices of other states. We show that collaboration in the CIA program is associated with a worsening in the human rights practices of authoritarian countries. This finding illustrates how states learn from and influence one another through covert security cooperation and the importance of democratic institutions in mitigating the adverse consequences of the CIA program. This finding also underscores why a broad perspective is critical when assessing the consequences of counterterrorism policies.
Timing and Sequencing in International Politics: Latin America’s Contributions to Human Rights
Sikkink, Kathryn. 2017. “Timing and Sequencing in International Politics: Latin America’s Contributions to Human Rights.” International Politics and Institutions in Time, edited by Orfeo Fioretos, 231–50. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Publisher's Version
Pham, Phuong Ngoc, Patrick Vinck, Bridget Marchesi, Doug Johnson, Peter J. Dixon, and Kathryn Sikkink. 2016. “Evaluating Transitional Justice: The Role of Multi-Level Mixed Methods Datasets and the Colombia Reparation Program for War Victims.” Transitional Justice Review 1 (4): 1–37. Publisher's Version Abstract
This paper examines the role of mixed and multi-level methods datasets used to inform evaluations of transitional justice mechanisms. The Colombia reparation program for victims of war is used to illustrate how a convergent design involving multiple datasets can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of a complex transitional justice mechanism. This was achieved through a unique combination of (1) macro-level analysis enabled by a global dataset of transitional justice mechanisms, in this case the reparations data gathered by the Transitional Justice Research Collaborative, (2) meso-level data gathered at the organizational level on the Unidad para las Victimas (Victims Unit), the organization in charge of implementing the reparations program and overseeing the domestic database of victims registered in the reparations program, and (3) micro-level population- based perception datasets on the Colombian reparations program collected in the Peacebuilding Data database. The methods used to define measures, access existing data, and assemble new datasets are discussed, as are some of the challenges faced by the inter-disciplinary team. The results illustrate how the use of global, domestic, and micro- level datasets together yields high quality data, with multiple perspectives permitting the use of innovative evaluation methods and the development of important findings and recommendations for transitional justice mechanisms.
Sikkink, Kathryn. 2015. “Latin America’s Protagonist Role in Human Rights.” Sur 12 (22): 207–19. Publisher's Version Abstract

Latin American governments, social movements, and regional organisations have made a far bigger contribution to the idea and practice of international human rights than has previously been recognised. Most discussions of the global human rights regime stress its origins in the countries of the Global North. This article explores the role of Latin America states as early protagonists of the international protection of human rights, focusing in particular on the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man, adopted 8 months before passage of the Universal Declaration. In light of this, Sikkink calls into question the idea that human rights originated only in the Global North.

This article is also available in Spanish and in Portuguese.
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Sikkink, Kathryn. 2013. “The United States and Torture: Does the Spiral Model Work?” The Persistent Power of Human Rights: From Commitment to Compliance, edited by Thomas Risse, Stephen C. Ropp, and Kathryn Sikkink, 145–63. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Publisher's Version
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Sikkink, Kathryn. 2012. “The Age of Accountability: The Global Rise of Individual Criminal Accountability.” Amnesty in the Age of Human Rights Accountability: Comparative and International Perspectives, edited by Leigh Payne and Francesca Lessa, 19–41. New York: Cambridge University Press. Publisher's Version
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Sikkink, Kathryn. 2009. “The Power of Networks in International Politics.” Networked Politics: Agency, Power, and Governance, edited by Miles Kahler, 228–47. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Publisher's Version
Full Chapter
Used with permission.
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Sikkink, Kathryn. 2008. “From International Relations to Global Society.” The Oxford Handbook of International Relations, edited by Christian Reus-Smit and Duncan Snidal, 62–83. New York: Oxford University Press. Publisher's Version Abstract
Historically speaking, the study of international relations has largely concerned the study of states and the effects of anarchy on their foreign policies, the patterns of their interactions, and the organization of world politics. However, over the last several decades, the discipline as begun moving away from the study of ‘international relations’ and toward the study of ‘global society’. This shift from ‘international relations’ to ‘global society’ is reflective of several important developments that are the focus of this article. The article begins with a discussion of the anarchy thematic and what John Agnew (1994) has called ‘the territorial trap’, and surveys some of the critical forces that compelled international relations scholars to free themselves from this trap. It then explores the shifts in the what, who, how, and why of the study of international relations. It considers the terminological shift from the study of international governance to the study of global governance, justified because the purposes of global governance no longer reflect solely the interests of states but now also include other actors, including international organizations, transnational corporations, nongovernmental organizations, and new kinds of networks.
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Sikkink, Kathryn. 2005. “The Transnational Dimension of the Judicialization of Politics in Latin America.” The Judicialization of Politics in Latin America, edited by Rachel Sieder, Line Schjolden, and Alan Angell, 263–92. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Publisher's Version
Sikkink, Kathryn. 2003. “A Typology of Relations between Social Movements and International Institutions.” Cambridge University Press 97: 301–5. Publisher's Version
Finnemore, Martha, and Kathryn Sikkink. 2001. “Taking Stock: The Constructivist Research Program in International Relations and Comparative Politics.” Annual Review of Political Science 4: 391–416. Publisher's Version Abstract
Constructivism is an approach to social analysis that deals with the role of human consciousness in social life. It asserts that human interaction is shaped primarily by ideational factors, not simply material ones; that the most important ideational factors are widely shared or “intersubjective” beliefs, which are not reducible to individuals; and that these shared beliefs construct the interests of purposive actors. In international relations, research in a constructivist mode has exploded over the past decade, creating new and potentially fruitful connections with long-standing interest in these issues in comparative politics. In this essay, we evaluate the empirical research program of constructivism in these two fields. We first lay out the basic tenets of constructivism and examine their implications for research methodology, concluding that constructivism's distinctiveness lies in its theoretical arguments, not in its empirical research strategies. The bulk of the essay explores specific constructivist literatures and debates in international relations and comparative politics.
Keck, Margaret, and Kathryn Sikkink. 1999. “Transnational Advocacy Networks in International and Regional Politics.” International Social Science Journal 51 (159): 89–101. Publisher's Version
Sikkink, Kathryn. 1998. “Transnational Politics, International Relations Theory, and Human Rights.” Political Science and Politics 31 (3): 517–21. Publisher's Version
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Keck, Margaret, and Kathryn Sikkink. 1998. Activists beyond Borders: Advocacy Networks in International Politics. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Publisher's Version
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Sikkink, Kathryn. 1991. Ideas and Institutions: Developmentalism in Brazil and Argentina. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Publisher's Version
Translated into Spanish as El proyecto desarrollista en la Argentina y Brasil: Frondizi y Kubitschek (Buenos Aires: Siglo Veintiuno Editora Iberoamericana, 2010).