Published online by Cambridge University Press: 16 December 2020
The purpose of this essay is to address the four organizing questions of the workshop. First, I discuss my own neoclassical realist staged theory of peacemaking, which incorporates other various subparadigms of realist thought, including balance of threat and hegemonic peace theories. My model is premised on the idea that peacemaking must begin as a top-down venture for the reasons realists and rationalists suggest, but that after a peace treaty or its equivalent is achieved, stable peace requires the treaty to be socialized using mechanisms derived from liberal and constructivist mechanisms. Second, I compare my paradigmatic model to other peacebuilding paradigms, emphasizing the ways in which a top-down approach to interstate peacemaking is derived from realist and rationalist theories of international politics and explain how it compares to the leading alternative approach, which is a bottom-up approach derived from liberal and constructivist theories. I address the implications my hybrid model has for the quest for a “positive” peace. Finally, I address the obstacles to peace and the policy recommendations that flow from my model.