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Values as Barriers to Compromise? Ideology, Transnational Coalitions, and Distributive Bargaining in Negotiations over the Third Greek Bailout

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What factors explain the brinkmanship and threats of Greece’s distributive tactics over the third bailout package in 2015? Examining negotiations between Greece and its creditors during SYRIZA’s (Coalition of the Radical Left) tenure in power, I argue that the Greek government’s strong ideological fervor turned the bailout negotiations into an ideologically based dispute, which involved “sacred” value biases and uncompromising posturing. Unable to form cooperative transnational coalitions, Athens increasingly turned to distributive bargaining tactics that antagonized creditors and escalated the conflict. The article highlights how values act as barriers in bailouts and has implications for the study of intergovernmental negotiations in the European Union.

Affiliations: 1: Department of International Studies, Rhodes College 2000 North Parkway, Memphis, tn 38112 USA

1 Nikolaos Zahariadis is Mertie Buckman Professor of International Studies at Rhodes College. He has published widely on European integration and the financial crisis.

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