Dan Lindley


Avoiding Tragedy in Power Politics:  The Concert of Europe, Transparency, and Crisis Management



































            Avoiding Tragedy in Power Politics: The Concert of Europe, Transparency, and Crisis Management  The Concert of Europe was the first peacetime multilateral crisis management forum in history.  Before the Concert, states were limited to bilateral diplomacy, and the great powers never met all together to manage crises.  The chief benefit of meeting together was that information could be exchanged more quickly.  In theoretical terms, a greater flow of information means increased transparency.  Did the Concert increase transparency, and with what effects?

            I find that the Concert did increase transparency and that this helped resolve several of the Concert’s early crises by making coercive bargaining easier and clarifying the existence of internal schisms.  This undercuts the conventional wisdom that transparency works mostly to reduce fears and misperceptions.  There are frequent calls for more international forums to manage security problems.  These results suggest that while forums can help manage crises, they do so by helping states engage in power politics.  Forums make power politics easier.



Table of Contents


Introduction                                                                                                                              p. 1

Hypotheses and Methods                                                                                                         p. 8

            Table 1: Summary of Hypotheses                                                                                  p. 13

            The First Partition of Poland                                                                                                      p. 13

The Concert of Europe                                                                                                 p. 17

            The Formation of the Concert                                                                           p. 18

            Poland and Saxony, late 1814 - early 1815                                                                   p. 21

            The Rebellions in Naples and Spain                                                                               p. 26

            The Revolt in Greece                                                                                                    p. 30

            Independence of Belgium                                                                                              p. 35

Conclusion                                                                                                                               p. 42

            Table 2: Findings by Hypothesis                                                                                    p. 44

            Implications                                                                                                                  p. 45








Prior versions of this paper were presented at the Program on International Politics, Economics, and Security (PIPES), University of Chicago in December 1999, and at the American Political Science Association conference in September 2002.  I am grateful for the helpful comments of Clifford Bob, Daniel Drezner, Charles Kupchan, Charles Lipson, Tony Messina, David Nickles, Duncan Snidal, Al Tillery, Alexander Wendt, and several external reviewers.




            Formed by the victors of the Napoleonic Wars, the Concert of Europe was the first peacetime multilateral crisis management forum.  Although its influence waned by the 1830s, its example still exerts a powerful influence on policy-makers, and there is much scholarly debate about the extent and causes of its effectiveness.  The Concert was the institutional precursor of the League of Nations and the United Nations, and it continues to inspire the development and understanding of international organizations.  With the end of the Cold War, many observers argued that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and other Cold War alliances were becoming less relevant to the West's security.  Seeing a need and an opportunity to transform NATO from an us-against-them alliance into a tool of joint great power management of security issues, a number of analysts looked back to the early nineteenth century Concert of Europe as a model security regime.  Over a dozen calls for Concert-based or Concert-like structures appeared in prominent journals and books.[1] 

            The Concert of Europe has and continues to influence the thinking of scholars and policy-makers about other regimes as diverse as the Group of Seven/Eight (G7/G8), the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Organization of African Unity (OAU), the African Union, and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).[2]  Finally, international relations theorists have used the Concert to develop theories about security institutions.  For example, Robert Jervis called the Concert the "best example of a security regime."[3]

            Scholars debate fundamental questions about the Concert: Did the Concert promote peace?  If so, how?  A large body of Concert optimists argue that the Concert contributed to peace because it fostered and operated according to several principal norms: states behaved with moderation; they compensated each other when territorial and other adjustments became necessary; they consulted with one another and did not act unilaterally; and they kept the general equilibrium in mind when judging the consequences of their actions.  As a result, these scholars give the Concert credit for numerous peace-enhancing accomplishments: creation of buffer states, isolating regional conflicts, specifying spheres of influence, suppressing revolutions by multilateral action, and the general practice of multilateral conflict resolution.[4] 

            Paul Schroeder argues that all these effects amounted to a sweeping transformation, even “revolution,” of diplomacy and international relations.[5]  Concert optimists make some of the strongest claims for the effectiveness of institutions and regimes to be found in any issue area. 

            Concert pessimists discard institutional arguments and contend that if the Concert worked at all it was because skilled diplomats knew how to play power politics.  Realist interpretations of the Concert go back to Kissinger and beyond,[6] but only recently have a few Concert pessimists emerged to combine theory and history to challenge the post-Cold War wave of Concert optimism.  Matthew Rendall offers a balance of power interpretation of Russian diplomacy during the Greek rebellion against Turkey in the 1820s, while acknowledging that the great powers were content with the status quo.  Korina Kagan’s analysis of the Greek case is more


sweeping.  She lays out the normative arguments made by the institutionalists, notes the significant amount of realpolitik in the case, and concludes that:

since the Concert of Europe is widely hailed as the major paradigmatic case of an effective security regime, these findings deprive institutionalism of its strongest case in the security area.[7]     


            In this article, I adopt a middle position in the debate between the optimists and pessimists.  The Concert was neither a normative transformation of politics nor a phenomenon devoid of institutional benefits.  Rather, I argue that there was an institutional benefit provided by the Concert: that of transparency.  Increased transparency in turn helped bargaining.

            The Concert was a major diplomatic evolution in that it institutionalized for the first time the practice of meeting together for peacetime crisis management.  States before the Concert were limited to bilateral diplomacy, and never met together to manage crises.  Compared to prior pre-forum diplomatic practice, the chief benefit of meeting together should be the quicker exchange of information.  A greater flow of information should mean increased transparency – what states know about each other’s intentions and capabilities.[8]

            The reason is that in situations involving three or more states, bilateral diplomacy slows communications and poses coordination problems.  For example, if five states are limited to bilateral diplomacy, there have to be ten separate meetings for each to meet each other only once.  Imagine trying to exchange views as one might in a seminar or faculty meeting, without actually convening.   In contrast, multilateral forum diplomacy speed communications and lowers the transactions costs for exchanging information, and thus increases transparency.  Meeting in the same place should also facilitate backroom deals between subsets of the participants.  As Austrian foreign minister Count Wenzel Lothar Metternich said in anticipation of a meeting with British secretary of state Viscount Robert Stewart Castlereagh Castlereagh: “I shall achieve more in a few days...than in six months of writing.”[9]

            Although the Concert should be expected to increase transparency, no one has answered these questions:  Did the Concert facilitate the exchange of information and increase transparency?  If so, what effects did transparency have on crisis management?  

            These are the questions I address, and the answers advance the debate on the Concert’s effectiveness as a security regime and contribute to institutionalist scholarship on the provision and effects of transparency.  Moreover, study of the Concert helps us understand how multilateral forums work, and this in turn helps us assess the Concert’s role as a basis for policy recommendations.

            To date, there is little scholarship on security regimes, and work on institutions and regimes continues to be dominated by the subfield of international political economy (IPE).[10]  Within IPE, there is a large literature on barriers to cooperation in international relations and on how institutions can ameliorate those barriers.  Among the things institutions can do to promote cooperation are: increase information and transparency, provide issue linkage, increase the shadow of the future, reduce transaction costs, and propagate rules and norms.[11]

            Transparency is of growing interest to scholars and policy-makers.  Charles and Clifford Kupchan, Robert Jervis, and Charles Lipson have led the study of transparency in security affairs.  In part using the example of the Concert, they have developed theoretical arguments about different peace-promoting effects of transparency ranging from calming arms races to reducing miscalculation.[12]  Ideas about how transparency can ameliorate the security dilemma have a long history in the arms control literature and policy community.[13] 

            A new wave of scholarship by Ann Florini, James Marquardt, Ronald Mitchell, Bernard Finel, and Kirsten Lord begins to explore new arguments about the potentially negative effects of transparency.  They suggest that transparency may exacerbate tensions, make bargaining more difficult, and even lead to conflict.[14]  As with the debate about the Concert, there is an emerging debate between transparency optimists and pessimists.

            To determine whether the Concert increased transparency and what effects this had, this article first offers hypotheses about the provision and potential positive and negative effects of transparency.  To test the hypotheses, I examine the crisis surrounding the first partition of Poland in 1772.  This case serves as a control case for analysis of the Concert's crises because it is as close as possible to a Concert episode in time, geography, participating actors, stakes, and severity.  Analysis of pre-Concert crisis management sets a performance benchmark to help measure the effects of the new forum diplomacy provided by the Concert.        I then examine how the Concert handled the first five crises it confronted. 

            I find that the Concert increased transparency and thus facilitated power politics.  This in turn helped resolve some of the Concert’s early crises.  In four of five crises examined, the Concert modestly increased transparency, thus making coercive bargaining easier and clarifying the presence of internal schisms.  This helped bring peaceful endings to two crises, and led to peaceful standoffs in the other two cases.  One example was the Poland/Saxony crisis during the Congress of Vienna in 1814/15 in which three states made a secret alliance and revealed it the next day to successfully coerce two other states into backing down.  Such quick exchanges of information about the positions of states and the stakes involved would have been impossible prior to the forum.  Because of increased transparency, the Concert made power politics work more quickly and peacefully. 

            The frequent use of coercion and realpolitik by the great powers of the Concert period undercuts the norm-based arguments of the optimists.  The only real norm evinced is that of meeting together to confront crises. This was a major evolution in international politics, but the reason it helped the cause of peace was that it greased the wheels of power politics.


Hypotheses and Methods


            Transparency describes the availability of information about potential adversaries' capabilities and intentions.  If information about potential adversaries is easy to obtain, then the world is said to be transparent.  If information is difficult to acquire, the world is less transparent (or opaque).  An increase in transparency increases the amount and accuracy of information available to states about their potential adversaries' capabilities and intentions.  A decrease in transparency obscures and reduces this information.  The more transparency there is, the better a state can assess the threats it faces.  The less transparency there is, the harder it is for a state to assess threats.

            I seek to assess whether the Concert increased transparency and whether transparency promoted peace.  The causal chain I am investigating is:


The first independent variable is the Concert.  Transparency is a dependent and, then, an independent variable.  The ultimate dependent variable is peace, seen primarily as variations in tension during crises.

            The hypotheses spell out the different ways that transparency can affect the probability of war and peace. The following paragraphs explain these hypotheses and their main observable implications.

            The first hypothesis is that regimes provide transparency (H1).  Transparency does not just happen; an agent or mechanism is always required generate information, provide information, or facilitate the flow of information between the states involved.  Mechanisms may include everything from peacekeepers and satellites to hot lines, but in this case, the mechanism is the Concert’s forum diplomacy.  The central observable implication of this hypothesis is that states will meet together to discuss their problems.  However, that is not enough to be able to tell if the regime is increasing the information flow.  Actors between whom information is distributed should be identifiable, as should be the content of the information. 

            The negative variant of this hypothesis is that regimes spread misinformation (H1').  This would happen if the Concert’s mechanisms were used to spread disinformation, as happened to a limited extent during the Greek case.  Is it possible that forum diplomacy, which speeds communications compared to bilateral diplomacy, could lower transparency by providing more inaccurate than accurate information?  Yes, it is possible, and the point of H1' is to investigate this possibility.  However, beyond the inductive point that this rarely happened in the cases, there are several deductive arguments that more information generally means more accurate information about adversary’s capabilities and intentions (and thus increases transparency) than less information.  First, there is no logical reason to believe that the percent of misinformation would go up because of forum diplomacy compared to prior periods.  Second, even if the bulk of information exchanged is misinformation, a greater flow of misinformation should make lie detection easier (which is itself a signal that in a roundabout way increases transparency).  Third, a forum setting should provide more opportunity to verify information.  If a diplomat suspected misinformation, would he/she rather not be in a forum setting where he/she could meet his/her counterpart face-to-face and quickly cross-check information with allies?  Fourth, except for possible signal-to-noise issues facing today’s intelligence services in the modern telecommunications-dense world, it is not plausible to argue that less information generates more transparency than more information.  Finally, some may argue that communication in forums is just cheap talk.  However, the repeated war scares, military threats and maneuvers, and hard bargaining in several of the crises examined offer a prima facie case against cheap talk and for costly signals and meaningful diplomacy, at least for the Concert.

            The second hypothesis is that transparency promotes cooperation (H2).  Lack of transparency causes states to fear that others will cheat on agreements.  Fears of cheating diminish the willingness of states to form security regimes, or enter into peace treaties, arms control agreements and so forth..  In contrast, increased transparency lessens fears of cheating.  By lessening fears of cheating, increased transparency increases states' willingness to cooperate and sign peace treaties and other agreements.  Thus, the promise of transparency can help lead states to make agreements while verification of continued compliance helps maintain the agreed-upon cooperation.

            As the Concert was not designed to verify the Vienna treaty (or any other agreement), not much evidence is likely to be found for this hypothesis.  However, Castlereagh did think that meeting together in a forum would reduce tensions.  There is no H2' because the lack of verification gives states little reason to object to meeting together.

            The third hypothesis is that transparency reduces unwarranted fears and worst-case assumptions (H3).  Faced with uncertainty in their threat assessments, states must often make worst-case assumptions to ensure their security.  By definition, worst-case assumptions are likely to be wrong and, if wrong, they create unwarranted fears.  Increased transparency allows states to replace worst-case assumptions with facts, and this will reduce unwarranted fears in most cases.  This in turn reduces tensions and security spirals, reducing the likelihood of war and increasing the likelihood of cooperation.  The main observable implication of this hypothesis is that threat assessments should become more benign during meetings of the Concert.  The negative variant is that transparency confirms fears (H3') and this would be found if increased transparency provided information that confirmed states’ fears.

            The fourth hypothesis is that transparency reduces optimistic miscalculation (H4).  The absence of transparency may cause or exacerbate optimistic miscalculation, a frequent cause of deterrence failure.  For example, states start wars because of unwarranted beliefs that offense is easy or victory assured (offensive optimistic miscalculation).  Or states may think that defense is easier or that war is less likely than they actually are and they may fail to deter (defensive optimistic miscalculation).  If states can not determine the payoffs associated with war, miscalculation is likely.  As Geoffrey Blainey notes: "most wars were likely to end in the defeat of at least one nation which had expected victory."[15]  Miscalculation can also occur in negotiations where difficulties in measuring relative power can lead states to adopt overly ambitious or overly cautious positions.  Increased transparency reduces false optimism. 

            The main prediction for H4 is that military plans and political goals will change upon receiving more information about the capabilities and intentions of others.  These changes will be caused by information provided by the regime and actors will explain these changes with reference to this new information.  The negative variant is that transparency helps plan aggression (H4').  This would be found when increased transparency provides information that helps states plan attacks on others.

            The final hypothesis is that transparency clarifies bargaining positions and reduces conflict (H5).  This can happen in three ways.  First, states can learn the extent to which they may realize joint gains through cooperation.  Second, states may clarify their positions, stakes, and relative power in such a way as to make coercion work.  Finally, states may realize that they are in deadlock.  Deadlock need not lead to conflict.  As Kenneth Oye reminds us, deadlock may result more often from the absence of mutual interest than from unwarranted fears, security dilemmas, accidents, and miscalculations.[16]  Each side might live with deadlock if they came to realize that escalation would be too costly, and both were deterred.

            The main prediction for H5 is that new information will clarify positions, stakes, and relative power, and spur agreement, successful coercion, or acceptance of deadlock.   The negative variant is that transparency clarifies positions and increases conflict (H5') and this occurs when new information makes bargaining harder and relations are worsened.  States may see war as increasingly likely or necessary, and tensions may spiral upwards.  H3 and H5 are similar, except that H3 focuses on threat assessments, security dilemmas, and spirals while H5 focuses on bargaining (and H4 focuses on planning for war, while H2 focuses on the promise of transparency as a motivation for regime formation).

            Table 1 summarizes the main findings by hypothesis:

Table 1: Summary of Hypotheses


Main question used to examine hypothesis in the case studies:

Regimes provide transparency (H1)

Regimes spread misinformation (H1')

Does the regime use a transparency mechanism to help exchange or generate information and is the information accurate?

Transparency promotes cooperation (H2) 

Does the promise of regime provided-transparency promote cooperation?

Transparency reduces unwarranted fears and worst-case assumptions (H3) 

Transparency confirms fears (H3') 

Does transparency reduce or confirm fears about the adversary’s capabilities and intentions?

Transparency reduces optimistic miscalculation (H4)

Transparency helps plan aggression (H4')

Does transparency change war plans and prevent or provoke war?

Transparency clarifies positions and reduces conflict (H5)

Transparency clarifies positions and increases conflict (H5') 


Does transparency help establish the positions and stakes in a conflict and does this increase or reduce conflict?


            To test these various hypotheses and check on their observable implications, I will focus on examining turning points in crises.  In these turning points, I will answer the following questions: What explains why the crisis escalated or was diffused?  What explains changes in states’ behavior?  How much of a role does transparency play?


The First Partition of Poland



            On October 6, 1768, war erupted between Russia and Turkey when Russian troops pursued Polish rebels across the Polish border and into the then Turkish-held town of Balta.  At the time, Poland, though technically sovereign and neutral, was Russia’s puppet, while the Ottoman Empire extended north through what is now Romania up to Poland.  

            In spring and summer 1769, Russia won a series of military victories.  Russia occupied Bessarabia and the Danubian principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia on the Austrian frontier.  By mid-1770, Russia had begun to conquer the Crimea, stirred up a revolt in southern Greece (Morea), and, after sailing from the Baltic, had sunk the Turkish fleet (with British help) at Chesme in the Mediterranean.

            Austria feared being dragged into this war along its Eastern borders, and Prussia in turn feared what might become a larger European war.  Starting in August 1769, Austria and Prussia began discussions over a number of issues, including exchanging articles of neutrality, possible mediation of the Russo-Turkish war, and initial ideas for a partition of Poland.  In the partition, Russia would be given some of Poland as compensation for backing off from Turkey and withdrawing from the Danubian principalities it now occupied.  Austria and Prussia would gain Polish territory as well.

            Although Russia continued South and conquered Crimea on July 1, 1771, domestic politics, an epidemic, fear of peasant revolt, and continued unrest in Poland led Russia to become more conciliatory; it began to see partition as a viable choice to end the stresses of war. 

            A further prod to Russia came on July 6, when Turkey took up Austria’s offer of alliance.  Although Frederick believed that Austria actually would not be willing to fight for its new ally, he renewed his push for partition of Poland with Russia.  Russia viewed the Austro-Turkish treaty with greater alarm, especially when it learned that Turkey sent silver to Austria, as payment in accord with their not so secret treaty.[17]  Russia learned this from  Frederick (who knew it would alarm Russia), who learned it from the French, whose government in Paris had been informed of the shipment by the British Ambassador in Constantinople.[18]  This was the final straw for Russia which finally accepted a Prussian plan for partition in January of 1772.  Austria resisted the plan for several months, but eventually gave in as Russia and Prussia offered ever-larger shares of Poland.

            The turning points in the three years’ long crisis were three shifts in power: on the ground (Russia’s victories), domestically (Russia’s turmoil), and in alliances (Turkey with Austria).  None required a security regime to make it effects known.  In the end, Poland lost one-third of its territory and one-half of its population.  Prussia achieved its goal of partitioning Poland and avoiding being dragged into war.  Austria received the largest share of Poland, and the Russians withdrew their threatening forces from the Danubian Principalities and returned the territory to Turkey (but gave itself the role of protector of those lands).[19] 

            The deal to partition Poland was a complicated and multilateral outcome - even though it resulted from a series of  bilateral negotiations and maneuvers.  A multilateral forum was not necessary to conduct the complicated diplomatic dance that preceded the partition, or to achieve the tripartite partition itself.  States did not need a forum or any added transparency it might provide to machinate, to be aware of each others’ machinations, or to make a multilateral peace agreement.

            Could a multilateral forum, like the later Concert of Europe, have changed the outcome?  A plausible counterfactual argument can be made that multilateral diplomacy would have reduced tensions between Russia and Austria and hastened - but not changed - the eventual outcome.  Austria and  Prussia (and Russia to a lesser extent) had shared and overlapping interests.  Multilateral diplomacy could have revealed those common interests sooner and reduced the need for what seems to have been an inefficient and time-consuming level of manipulation.  That said, Russia’s victories and then domestic weakness arguably explain most of the changes in Austrian, Prussian, and Turkish policies during this episode.  Multilateral diplomacy would have had little effect on these factors.  In the end, all one can conclusively say is that sequential diplomacy was sufficient to produce a multilateral outcome and that multilateral diplomacy was not necessary to do so.

            To what extent do these results offer a baseline for measuring increases in transparency provided by the Concert (H1)?  The first partition of Poland suggests that there was already some transparency and diplomatic nimbleness without forum diplomacy.  On the other hand, the first partition of Poland took a long time to negotiate.  In contrast, several disputes during the Concert were resolved with relative alacrity; they probably would not have been resolved so fast without the use of multilateral forum diplomacy. 


The Concert of Europe


            This section investigates how much the early nineteenth century’s new practice of multilateral crisis-management - called the Concert of Europe - helped states manage crises.   I examine the five most significant crises the Concert confronted in its early years: the crisis over Poland and Saxony in 1814/15, the rebellions in Naples and Spain in the early 1820s, the revolt in Greece also in the early 1820s, and the establishment of Belgian independence and neutrality in the early 1830s.  According to most scholars of the Concert, it was most effective and coherent during its earliest years: 1814-15 through the early 1820s.[20]  

            I begin by sketching the origins and legal framework of the Concert.  This will help determine the extent to which the promise of transparency to be provided by the Concert helped motivate the Concert’s founders.  To the extent this is true, it supports H2 which contends that the promise of transparency promotes cooperation.  Then I examine the five crises to see if the Concert actually provided transparency (H1) and what effect this transparency had on crisis management.


The Formation of the Concert


            The Concert of Europe took form through a series of military, political, and ideological treaties.  Tracing these treaties shows that the Concert had its roots in the wartime alliance against Napoleon.  It owes much of its existence to the momentum of that alliance, to continued fear of a resurgent and possibly revolutionary France, and to the fear of liberal revolution more generally.  These fears bound the Concert and thus Walt’s balance of threat theory explains most of the Concert’s origins.[21]

            However, the contention that the promise of transparency helped spur the Concert into existence (H2) receives mild support.  Britain’s Foreign Minister Viscount Castlereagh, the prime architect of the Concert, expressed hope in his first trip to the continent in 1814 that the Concert-to-be would increase transparency:

many pretensions might be modified, asperities removed, and causes of irritation anticipated and met, by bringing the respective parties in unrestricted communications common to them all, and embracing in confidential and united discussion all the great points in which they were severally interested.[22]

            This statement confirms H2 in that Castlereagh expressed his belief that a regime could promote peace with transparency.  Castlereagh’s statement also indicates an understanding that transparency would promote peace by reducing fears and tensions (H3), and miscalculation (H4).  Confirmation would be stronger if I had found evidence that Castlereagh used these arguments to persuade others to sign on.

            The first concrete step towards the Concert of Europe was the Treaty of Chaumont, signed by Austria, Britain, Prussia, and Russia just prior to Napoleon’s first defeat and abdication in March 1814.  The allies agreed to continue the war against France, each maintaining 150,000 troops in the field for service against France, and “most important, [it] united them for twenty years in jointly maintaining peace.”[23]

            In September 1814, the Congress of Vienna met to chart Europe’s future and is widely recognized as the birthplace of the Concert of Europe.  The Congress’ Final Act of June 1815 - a lengthy, formal, and detailed document - covered over one hundred territorial, governance, legal, and other issues.

            The defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo marked the next evolutionary step, when the Allies signed the Second Treaty of Paris, on November 20, 1815.  While singling out the dangers of Bonapartism, the allies also expressed more general fears about liberal revolution:

And as the same revolutionary principles which upheld the last criminal usurpation, might again, under other forms, convulse France, and thereby endanger the repose of other States; under these circumstances the High Contracting Parties...engage...to concert themselves...for the safety of their respective states, and for the general tranquillity of Europe.[24]

            Further, the Allies pledged to “renew their Meetings at fixed periods...for the purpose of consulting upon their common interests” to promote prosperity and maintain the “Peace of Europe.”[25]  The Concert of Europe thereby received formal recognition and its role as a discussion forum was codified.[26]  The Quadruple Alliance was expanded to include France by the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in October 1818.  [[expand? any other purposes?]]

            Next, the Treaty of the Holy Alliance was signed by Austria, Prussia, and Russia on September 26, 1815.  The most ideologically motivated of the various treaties of the period, it marked the beginning of the European Eastern-Conservative vs. Western-more-liberal schism.  The Treaty stated that the “Three Contracting Monarchs” agreed to “take no other rule for their guidance” than the precepts of Christianity - “Justice, Charity, and Peace” and to give each other aid and assistance “on all occasions and in all places.”[27]  Even though they did not take it seriously, all other European governments subsequently adhered to this treaty, except Turkey, the Papal States, and Great Britain.[28]

            Two liberal revolutions in 1820 (Spain, January; Naples, July) prompted Russia’s Tsar Alexander I to call a conference of the great powers in Troppau in October, 1820.  The resulting Troppau Protocol endorsed the use of force against revolutionary states, and was signed only by Austria, Russia, and Prussia.[29]  The rejection of the Protocol by the British Government[30] created “an open and public breach with the Alliance.”[31]

            By formalizing commitments and making states more explicitly express their views by voting on them, the Concert reduced ambiguity and heightened tensions with England.  However, this incident only mildly supports hypotheses about regimes increasing transparency (H1), and transparency increasing conflict (H5') because Britain would probably have distanced itself from any conservative intervention, regardless of procedures.  Despite these initial schisms, Castlereagh said in 1816 that the practice of meeting together reduced what otherwise would have been a “cloud of prejudice and uncertainty.”  Although it is not clear what actual misperceptions (H3) or miscalculations (H4) were reduced, his assertion offers modest support for these hypotheses.[32] 


First Crisis: Poland and Saxony, late 1814 - early 1815


            In this crisis, forum diplomacy helped Austria, France, and Great Britain quickly make an alliance and coerce Russia into ending the conflict.  Clear diplomacy prevented Russia from miscalculating and led it to back down.  This offers support for H4 which contends that transparency can reduce miscalculation and H5 which contends that transparency clarifies positions and reduces conflict.

            The most difficult and dangerous problem that arose during the Congress of Vienna involved the ultimate governance of the Duchy of Warsaw (Poland) and the Kingdom of Saxony.  By the end of the Napoleonic Wars, Austria, Prussia, and Russia had already signed treaties (Teplitz, Kalisch, and Reichenbach) to peacefully partition Saxony, Poland, and other territories when the war was over.  Russia, the dominant power in the region, wanted Poland and had 200,000 troops stationed there at war’s end.  But some of Poland had been part of Prussia, so to placate Prussia, Russia backed giving it long-coveted Saxony in exchange.

            Russia’s plan amounted to a fait accompli and raised fears in England and Austria.[33]  If Russia obtained Poland, Russian power would be projected deep into central Europe.  Central Europe would then no longer be strong enough to serve as a counterweight either to French or Russian expansion.  Austria was concerned that Prussian expansion into Saxony would boost its influence throughout greater Germany and give Prussia a much longer border with Austria.  

            In the face of mounting resistance from England, Austria, and France, Alexander became increasingly adamant.  During an October 22 ,1814 meeting between Alexander and France’s representative Prince Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord, Alexander said, “I have two hundred thousand men in the duchy of Warsaw.  Let them drive me out if they can!  I have given Saxony to Prussia; and Austria consents.”  Talleyrand replied, “I do not know that.  I should find it difficult to believe, it is so decidedly against her own interests.  But can the consent of Austria give to Prussia what belongs to the King of Saxony?”  Talleyrand had, “reminded [Alexander] of the treaty by which the allies had agreed that the duchy of Warsaw should be shared by the three courts,” and Alexander retorted that, “If the King of Saxony refuses to abdicate, he shall be led to Russia; where he will die.... You are always speaking to me of principles.  Your public law is nothing to me: I don’t understand all that.  What do you think are all your parchments and treaties to me?”[34]

            Thus Talleyrand and Alexander clarified  their differences, made claims about relative power on the ground, and indicated how each viewed the stakes in the crisis.  At this point, transparency was increasing tensions (H5').

            Talk of impending war swept the Congress from October on into December.  Despite quickly rising tensions, it became clear that Russia would not budge and would eventually receive the lion’s share of Poland.  The prospect of Russia’s inevitable success in Poland frightened Prussia’s Prince Carl Vincent von Hardenberg, as the agreed-upon support from Austria and Britain for his claims to Saxony were conditional on a less lopsided outcome in Poland.

            Having lost on Poland, Austria dug in its heels on Saxony and tensions rose between Austria and Prussia.  Castlereagh proposed to Prussia that it accept a limited part of Saxony and receive compensation elsewhere.  This outcome was unacceptable to Prussia, and on December 30, Hardenberg stated that refusal of others to recognize its annexation of the whole of Saxony was “tantamount to a declaration of war.”  Castlereagh termed this “a most alarming and unheard-of menace.”[35]  Here is another instance of clarification of positions increasing conflict, supporting the predictions of H5'.

            Meanwhile, Talleyrand had offered an alliance with Austria and Britain on December 23.  These rising tensions made Austria and Britain accept.  On January 3, 1815 the three powers signed a secret treaty in which each promised to supply 150,000 troops in case of attack.  The treaty strengthened the resolve of Metternich and Castlereagh in their continued discussions with Hardenberg, and Hardenberg began to yield.  

            Castlereagh met with Alexander on January 4, just one day after the treaty was signed.  At this meeting, Alexander asked him if the rumors of the treaty were true and Castlereagh answered in a way that “could have left him little doubt...and henceforward the Russian plenipotentiaries worked their hardest for a settlement.” Alexander withdrew Russian support of Prussia’s all-or-nothing position and urged a compromise partition of Saxony.[36]  Prussia, the weakest of the great powers, lost its ally and was forced to accept a compromise in which it received two-fifths of Saxony and portions of the Rhineland.  The quick formation and even quicker leak of the secret alliance was the turning point.

            Coercion was successful.  Plans were changed based on new information whose provision was facilitated by the regime, reducing miscalculation that might otherwise have caused Russia and Prussia to persist with their demands in the face of ever more determined opposition.[37] 




            To assess the role of transparency in this crisis, one must look at how the powers resolved the two problems that created the crisis:  Russia’s annexation of Poland and Prussia’s claims to compensation.  Russia succeeded while Prussia’s claims were clipped back.  In both cases, albeit with some risk, power relationships were made clear and then were no longer contested.

            At first, the forum helped states clarify their positions (H1), and this increased tensions (H5') and led to balancing.  The most crucial turning points were the events leading up to Prussia’s diplomatic retreat.  Concert diplomacy facilitated the making of the secret alliance and Concert diplomacy also let news of the alliance reach Alexander efficiently.  As this would have been very difficult to achieve with such speed prior to forum diplomacy, this is clear evidence that the Concert increased transparency (H1).  Russia was successfully coerced and when Prussia then backed down, its aggressive optimism was revealed to be something of a miscalculation; thus transparency reduced miscalculation (H4) and helped bargaining (H5).  The complex dance between rising tensions, balancing, and successful coercion is simply realpolitik, aided by transparency.

            Were norms or other institutional effects at work helping to resolve the crisis?  Schroeder rejects the realpolitik argument altogether, arguing that “balance of power tactics were tried and failed.”  Yet he also says that  Russia prevailed “hands down” with its fait accompli due to its “big battalions,” and that power helped “force” concessions from Prussia.[38]  If that is not realpolitik, what is?  Schroeder writes that Russia forced concessions to save the alliance,[39] but that boils down to saving the alliance from Russia’s own belligerent policy.  Russia reduced the costs of its fait accompli by transferring those costs onto Prussia (by making Prussia accept less than it sought and less than it had been promised).  Kissinger and Schroeder agree that no state truly wanted war, so some credit for the peaceful outcome of this episode is due to the shared moderation of the Concert states.  However, perhaps more remarkable is all the talk of war from states who had just endured and fought together during the Napoleonic Wars. 


Second and Third Crises: The Rebellions in Naples and Spain


            The liberal rebellions in Naples and Spain highlight the ideological jockeying over the purposes of the Concert.  The crises made Britain’s opposition to joint intervention against liberal revolution even more explicit.  This created a schism in the Concert.  As a result, these cases offer modest support for H5', which contends that transparency may increase conflict.

            When a military-led revolution broke out in Spain in January of 1820, the only great power concerned at first was Russia.  Having for years advanced the idea, particularly at the Congress of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1818, that the alliance should evolve into an anti-revolutionary league (as well as a general alliance to defend the status quo), Russia soon called for a great power congress to confront the Spanish revolt.  Russia’s call languished until another revolt broke out in Naples in July.  Naples adopted the same liberal constitution as that taken up by the Spanish revolutionaries.  Austria wanted to intervene in Naples to restore conservative order in its Italian satellite.  For France, this plan heightened the Franco-Austrian competition for influence in Italy, so it began to seek a congress in order to restrain Austria.  As at Aix, Britain opposed any allied steps towards a general policy of suppressing revolutions and it opposed a congress

            Despite British opposition, a congress was held at Troppau in late 1820, with Russia, Austria, and Prussia represented by plenipotentiaries and France and Britain by observers.  The three Eastern powers issued the Troppau Protocol on November 19 which stated in part:

Any state forming part of the European Alliance which may change its form of interior government through revolutionary means, and which might thus become a menace to other states, will automatically cease to form a part of the Alliance.... The Allied Powers ... will employ every means to bring the offenders once more within the sphere of the Alliance.  Friendly negotiations will be the first means resorted to, and if this fails, coercion will be employed.[40]


            Lord Charles Stewart, the British representative, returned from a visit to Vienna to find himself presented with the Protocol already signed by Russia, Prussia, and Austria.  He protested this fait accompli.  Britain and France refused to sign.  This shows how a document which was intended to express and consolidate norms instead ended up highlighting rifts in the Concert, as predicted by H5'. 

            Nonetheless, Austria’s plans were blessed by the Troppau Protocol and Austria sent troops to crush the Naples revolt in early 1821.  In theory, this joint blessing may have reduced miscalculation (H4).  In reality, there was little threat of war due to the intervention, blessing or not, hence little potential for miscalculation.

            With regard to the revolt in Spain, Russia offered to lead an international army to quash the Spanish rebellion by sending its troops across Europe and into Spain.  This was a threatening prospect for the other powers, especially Austria, and preventing Russian intervention was one reason that Metternich so quickly supported action by France.  France at first wanted to keep the matter out of alliance hands, but ended up supporting a Congress at Verona which convened starting in October 1822. 

            Britain again objected to intervention.  Nonetheless, France won the backing of the three Eastern powers, invaded Spain, and restored Ferdinand VII in April 1823.  Canning, Castlereagh’s successor, obtained French assurances that the invasion would be temporary and that Portugal’s independence would be respected.

            The joint blessing to France made action in Spain more predictable, and helped keep Russia from marching across Europe.  Thus, it is possible that forum diplomacy mildly reduced fears of Russian or French actions, and reduced any resulting miscalculation.  This would support the predictions of H3 and H4.  But the clearest result of the diplomacy surrounding these revolutions was to highlight schisms in the Concert caused by Britain’s objections to the interventions, and this supports H5' which contends that transparency can increase tensions when it clarifies positions.

            The revolutions showed that “common action was no longer possible ... because the insular and the Continental conceptions of danger had become incompatible.”[41]  When Britain rejected the Troppau Protocol, it started a “doctrinal controversy and propaganda war [that] would last for decades [and produced] the first open break between Britain and the Holy Alliance.”[42]  Canning wrote of Verona: “The issue of Verona has split the one and indivisible alliance into three parts as distinct as the constitutions of England, France, and Muscovy...and so things are getting back to a wholesome state again.  Every nation for itself and God for us all.”[43]  According to Temperley,  Metternich thought the breach with England might end the Congress system.[44] 




            Concert diplomacy helped clarify the great powers’ intentions and it is possible, although unlikely, that the chance of war was diminished in the Spanish case.  However improbable, Russia’s scheme to march a Russian army through Europe to Spain raised tensions and the risks of accident and miscalculation.  Concerted diplomacy helped dissuade Tsar Alexander from following through with his plan.  By clarifying actions, the potential for unwarranted fears (H3) and miscalculation was possibly reduced (H4).  With regard to the possible conflict between France and Austria over Italy, discussions, the Troppau declaration, and Russia’s backing of Austria all made the small possibility of Franco-Austro conflict even more remote.

            However, it is not clear that Concert diplomacy added much to what regular diplomacy could have achieved.  Other than when Britain was presented with a pre-signed declaration, I cannot identify moments where crisis resolution was greatly accelerated or where specific information really altered the course of events.  In the end, the most threatened powers (Austria and France) intervened against the threats and the least threatened power (Britain) stayed on the sidelines. No serious problems were averted (or were even at stake).  Britain’s liberal position was known before hand, and despite some grave language, Britain came back to the Concert in later episodes.  Thus, it is not clear that the Concert did much to increase transparency (H1).  And if H1 is not really confirmed, this weakens support for the other hypotheses.


Fourth Crisis: The Revolt in Greece


            The case of the early 1820s revolt of the Greeks against the Turks offers hints that the Concert facilitated a deception campaign.  Britain and Austria used misinformation to persuade Russia not to intervene on behalf of the Greeks.  However, support for the contention that regimes can spread misinformation (H1') is diminished by the fact that the Britains and Austrians mostly used bilateral means and not the forum for transmitting exaggerated reports.

            In early 1821, Christians in Greece and in the Danubian Principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia rebelled against their Muslim Turkish rulers.  By March 1821, over one-third of the forty thousand Turks in Morea (Southern Greece) had been killed.  This quickly led to Turkish counter-atrocities, including the killing of the Orthodox Greek Patriarch of Constantinople at the door of his cathedral on Easter Sunday in April 1821. 

            Had this been another liberal revolution similar to those in Naples and Spain, the Concert powers might have been content to see the Sultan suppress the revolution.  But Russia had traditionally viewed itself as the protector of the Orthodox faith and was motivated to intervene to protect its fellow faithful.  Moreover, Russia and the Ottoman Empire had been competing for influence throughout the Balkans, the Caucasus, and around the Black Sea for years.  Instead of wanting to crush the Greek rebellion, Russia wanted to intervene for solidarity and gain.

            Austria feared Balkan turmoil on its doorstep, and wanted to keep Russia at arms-length.  Britain preferred a weak Ottoman Empire to a strengthened Russia moving South into the Mediterranean.  France favored restraining Russia as well.           

            In July 1821 Russia issued an ultimatum to the Turks insisting that they protect the rights of Christians, and breaking relations with the Turks.  War seemed imminent.  Austria’s Metternich set out to convince the Tsar not to intervene.  As British interests were now threatened, Castlereagh put the schisms over Naples and Spain aside and added his voice to Metternich’s. 

            With Metternich in the lead, they appealed to the Tsar’s pro-Concert and anti-revolutionary feelings.  They reminded him of his pledges not to act unilaterally.  They gave the Tsar credit for creating the European Alliance and urged him not to wreck it.  At the same time, they also tried to convince Alexander that the rebels were not Christian victims in need of being saved by the Muslim Turks.  Instead, they painted the rebels as ordinary but dangerous liberal revolutionaries, whom Turkey was justified in crushing.  Metternich arranged to send numerous slanted and exaggerated (if not false) diplomatic and police reports from around Europe to Alexander attesting to the spread of revolutionary sentiment and the dangers of revolution.[45]  Patricia Kennedy Grimsted wrote that Metternich used “gross exaggeration and underhanded tactics” as part of his campaign.  For example, he ordered the interception of diplomatic cables looking for evidence to undermine the Tsar’s most influential advisor, the pro-Greek Count Ioannis Capo d’Istria (or Capodistrias), by tying him to the Greek rebellion.[46]  Metternich met Castlereagh in Hanover in October 1821 and they concocted to send similar messages to Russia.[47] 

            If this deception and propaganda plan were much aided by forum diplomacy, it might offer support for the hypothesis that regimes can spread misinformation (H1').  However, H1' is undercut because Concert diplomacy itself should be downplayed.  For example, Alexander had hoped that he could dominate the 1822 Congress of Verona with the subject of the revolt.  He was foiled and the Greek Revolt took a back seat to the situation in Spain, described above.  While not completely off the table, “it was a matter of common courtesy not to mention Turkish difficulties at Verona.”  What was discussed regarding Greece was “anticlimactic,” though the Conference did give Metternich the chance to continue spinning his tales of Greek-inspired revolutionaries in Europe to Alexander.[48]  In terms of diplomacy, it was non-forum communication such as Metternich’s meeting with Castlereagh in Hanover and the exaggerated reports to Alexander that most influenced the course of events.

            In terms of norms, this incident is one of the clearest examples of pro-Concert, non-unilateral norms actually affecting behavior and leading to an outcome that would not have happened in the absence of those norms.  Ironically, the norms were part of the deception campaign.

            By mid-1822, Alexander had been persuaded not to go to war, however morally satisfying or lucrative it might have been.  He acted to save the alliance, his Holy Alliance.  This is the turning point in the crisis, and it casts doubt on the value of Concert diplomacy in doing anything other than facilitating the deception that helped stop Alexander.

            If forum diplomacy was not crucial, was Alexander a norm-driven idealist, or was he duped by others’ misinformation?   The answer bears on the issue of whether the Greek crisis is an information story at all, and whether there were such a thing as Concert norms as claimed by the optimists. 

            Schroeder calls Alexander’s decision a “triumph of diplomacy over the use of force” and the “easiest and simplest” counter-realist example of a state that has “foregone concrete material advantages for the sake of moral principle.”[49]  On the other hand, Kissinger makes the Tsar out to be a dupe and quotes Metternich as holding Alexander’s pliability in contempt:

After having robbed the world of a few months of peace, the Emperor Alexander takes his head in his hands and presents himself before me with the request that I explain its content to him....[He] wants to find his way in a labyrinth and asks his old Ariadne for yarn.[50]


            Capodistrias seemed to agree.  After Alexander decided not to intervene, he resigned and said  that “with friends like Austria, Russia did not need enemies.”[51] 

            On the question of whether or not Alexander was an idealist or a dupe, the truth probably lies somewhere in between.  According to Matthew Anderson, Alexander was willing to have his hands tied.[52]




            The main turning point in this crisis was when Alexander was convinced not to intervene.  This episode hints that mechanisms which are supposed to increase transparency may be used to manipulate the truth.  As H1' suggests, it is likely true that anything that either transfers or generates information can also transfer or generate false information.  In this case though, the forum was probably not used to spread misinformation, and thus H1' does not apply.  However, questions that deserve more research are: when, how often, and under what conditions do mechanisms that increase transparency make deception easier?  

            The example of the Greek crisis alone is not sufficient to fully answer these questions, but Alexander’s gullibility suggests that the degree to which transparency helps or hinder deception depends to a large extent on the vigilance of states and their leaders.


Fifth Crisis: Independence of Belgium


            As with the Poland-Saxony episode, the crises surrounding the independence of Belgium show how Concert diplomacy speeded communications, helped states communicate threats, and helped avert miscalculation.  Because of this, the case provides evidence for several of the hypotheses, including H4 which contends that transparency can reduce miscalculation and H5 which contends that transparency can clarify bargaining positions and reduce conflict.  But evidence for the contributions of forum diplomacy and transparency is mixed because there was also considerable bilateral diplomacy going on, which also helped resolve problems. 

            For hundreds of years, the area of the Netherlands/Belgium/Luxemburg had been a source of tension and a flashpoint for European wars.  The 1815 Vienna settlement attached Belgium to the Dutch Netherlands in order to create a stronger buffer against France.  But, in August of 1830, the Belgians began to rebel against Dutch rule.  At the end of September, the Dutch had appealed to all the great powers save France for military help in suppressing the revolt.  In October, the Belgians declared their independence and on November 4, all five great powers met in London to discuss the problem.

            Remembering Napoleon and aware of France’s perennial appetite for Belgium, the rest of Europe feared French intervention.  France in turn feared the consequences of a British or Prussian intervention.  Russia favored intervention and mobilized forces, but would not act unilaterally and was soon distracted by more proximate problems when Poland rebelled against it in November 1830.  With everyone fearing intervention more than rebellion, the conference agreed in fairly short order to allow Belgium’s separation.  By late January 1831, the great powers had issued several joint Protocols specifying Belgium’s new borders, guaranteeing its independence (primarily from the French), and providing for freedom of navigation on rivers.

            Despite progress in the negotiations over Belgian independence at the London conference, Luxemburg remained occupied by Belgian troops and this caused a crisis by summer 1831.  On August 2, the Dutch attacked Belgium, and this time Belgium appealed to France for help.  France quickly entered Belgium and convinced Holland to take its troops home.  France then reversed a promise to withdraw its own troops and left its forces in Belgium pending a full settlement between Belgium and Holland. 

            Alarmed by the French move, the British thought that continued occupation would lead to war.  France’s King Louis-Philippe, a generally pacific leader, waffled in responding to British concerns.  At the urging of Britain’s foreign office, George Granville Leveson-Gower Granville, Britain’s ambassador in Paris had a blunt discussion with France and made clear that continued French occupation risked serious consequences.  At first, the French did not budge.  Britains’ foreign minister Viscount Henry Temple Palmerston wrote to Granville: “One thing is certain, the French must go out of Belgium, or we shall have a general war, and war in a few days.”   Prussia  threatened to move into the Rhine Provinces, and Russia’s threats to intervene regained their credibility as they came nearer to crushing the Polish revolt.  Britain’s Granville took the diplomatic lead and, with the support of the Austrian, Prussian, and Russian ambassadors to France (in Paris), convinced the French to leave Belgium in early September.[53]

.              This was a turning point.  The others powers were able to clarify and underscore their desire to have France leave.  Here we see the regime providing transparency (H1), clarifying positions and reducing conflict (H5).  However, support for these hypotheses is tempered by the fact that much of the diplomacy took place in Paris, not at the on-going London conference.  It is hard to discern the relative contributions of  forum diplomacy and bilateral diplomacy to the resolution of the crisis in this instance.

            Even though the French occupation had been dealt with, matters between Belgium and Holland were unresolved.  On October 15, 1831, the London conference put forward another plan for settling the situation.  Among its numerous provisions, the Twenty-four Articles called for Luxemburg to be partitioned between Belgium and Holland.

            A year later, the Dutch still rejected the Articles and were hindering shipping on the Scheldt river.  Holland still occupied Antwerp; Belgium still occupied Luxemburg.  To prevent escalation between Holland and Belgium, the Concert powers agreed to step up pressure on the Dutch.  The Eastern powers wanted to apply economic pressure on Holland, but the British and French thought that these measures were insufficient.  The French were prepared to unilaterally remove Holland from Antwerp by force.  Unilateral French action risked wider war, while inaction risked unilateral Prussian intervention.  Omond says this about the possibility of European-wide war, with France poised to move unilaterally against Antwerp:

One Prussian Corps was at Aix-la-Chapelle, and another was posted in reserve on the Rhine....  The danger of an explosion was increased by the temper of the Belgians; for it was quite possible that, if the two Western Powers did not act immediately, they might break loose and attack the Dutch.  If so, Prussia would rush in to the help of Holland and, should she be victorious, would take from France Alsace and Lorraine... all of which she tried to obtain during the Congress of Vienna.  If Prussia was defeated, France would endeavor to annex the Rhine Provinces and ... Luxemburg.  Austria and the other States of the Germanic Confederation would be drawn into the struggle.  Russia would intervene.... Great Britain, unless she deserted France, would find herself at war with more than one Continental Power; and soon not only Europe, but half the world, would be at war.

            With such a prospect, hesitation would have been fatal.  If Great Britain and France acted together...Prussia, it was known, would not oppose the coercion of Holland.[54] 

Prussia made this known in Paris, not at the London conference.

            On October 22, the British and French agreed to joint sea and land operations to get the Dutch out of Antwerp, free up shipping, and restore other territories in the low countries to their allotted Belgian or Dutch owners.  Russia left the conference, Austria and Prussia protested, but French troops re-entered Belgium on November 15 while the British blockaded the Scheldt.  According to Schroeder, this affront to the Eastern powers “caused suspension of the conference and created a war scare more serious than any earlier one.”[55]  It also resolved the crisis.

            It is difficult to judge whether tensions would have been higher or lower without the Concert.  Problems in Belgium are problems in the center of Europe, and would have drawn in most of the great powers anyway.  That said, diplomacy at the London conference, in Paris, and elsewhere did clarify the stakes and stances in the crisis.  As this happened, tensions rose as predicted by H5' but then fell as the crisis broke (H5).  Depending on the dynamics of a crisis and the interests of the actors, clarifying positions and stakes can raise tensions, reduce conflict, or both.

            Because the bilateral and multilateral bargaining prevented unilateral action, it is possible (or even likely given the threats and fears of war) that the bargaining lessened miscalculation.  This is predicted by H4 which contends that transparency can reduce miscalculation.  However, support for these hypotheses only exists to the extent that forum diplomacy helped achieve these results by speeding up the flow of information.

            In the face of Franco-British actions, the Dutch quickly withdrew from Antwerp and the French pulled out their troops.  This ended the immediate crisis, but the blockade persisted until May 1833.  The Belgian situation was not fully resolved until, after nearly a decade of diplomacy and coercion, a treaty was finally signed by Holland and Belgium on April 19, 1839.[56]




            There were two turning points in this crisis.  The first was getting France to leave Belgium on September 9, 1831.  This result was certainly aided by concerted diplomacy, but not necessarily by forum diplomacy.  Inasmuch as it was the European diplomats to Paris who took the lead in convincing France, the key diplomacy therefore took place in Paris, and not in London where the conference was being held.  To the extent that the forum was not used to speed the information flow, this undercuts support that would otherwise be generated for H1.

            The second turning point was when Britain and France joined forces to coerce the Dutch on October 22, 1832.  Britain and France knew of the impending dangers of war and, calculating correctly, took joint action to prevent it.  To calculate the danger of war correctly, the French and British had to know of Belgium’s impending threat to attack Holland and of Prussian intentions to support the Dutch in case the French intervention crossed onto Dutch territory.  Letters between Prince Talleyrand, the French envoy to the London Conference, and Victor Duc de Broglie, a French Foreign Ministry official, reveal that the French and British exchanged key information about their own intentions and capabilities and on the dangers of Prussian intervention in London and in Paris.  Further, the Prussians had made their intentions clear in direct communications with French government representatives in Paris.[57] 

            Here, the conference at London (or at least the diplomacy that took place in London) appears to have been helpful, but perhaps not crucial, in clarifying the situation.  Thus, there is some modest evidence that forum diplomacy increased transparency (H1).  Clarification of dangers and intentions first raised tensions (H5'), then led to Franco-British cooperation (H5).  However, the most important clarifier in this episode was the fact of joint British and French action, not the diplomacy surrounding it.  This action deterred Prussia and/or reduced its incentives to intervene, coerced the Dutch, and obviated Belgian action.  Finally, the amount of diplomacy that happened outside of London weakens the role of the forum, and this in turn undercuts H1 which contends that regimes provide transparency.

            It is plausible that war might have resulted had the powers been forced to undertake the time-consuming bilateral dance that characterized the partition of Poland in the 18th  century.  Even though the big picture is that the Belgium crisis persisted for years, some key aspects of it were resolved with relative alacrity, a possible indicator that transparency was increased.  The best example is the speed with which the French were persuaded to leave Belgium in the summer of 1831, a major turning point.  The Concert modestly and with limits enabled coercive transparency which in turn helped reduce miscalculation (H4).



            The Concert increased transparency in varying degrees at turning points in most of the five crises.  When it did, the effect was often to facilitate coercive bargaining.  The Concert’s institutional effects lie not with rules or norms, as the frequent war scares, blunt language, and forceful bargaining make clear.  Instead, the Concert sometimes increased transparency, and transparency in turn helped realpolitik lead to peaceful outcomes.  Crises often had to get worse as bargaining clarified the differences (H5'), before coercion worked and broke the deadlock (H5).  There was little evidence that transparency ever seriously lessened unwarranted fears, a notable finding because this is supposed to be a main peace-promoting benefit of transparency.

            Castlereagh, the prime architect of the Concert, expressed some hope that forum diplomacy would increase transparency and thereby reduce tensions.  I am not sure how much this view persuaded others to form the Concert, but Castlereagh at least believed that increased transparency was a reason to form a regime; this evidence supports H2.

            The mechanism of the forum diplomacy was used often.  However, states often supplemented Concert diplomacy with meetings in other locations, bilateral contacts, side-meetings, and so forth.  These may be valuable supplements to or byproducts of forums, and they may serve to increase transparency.  But they may also serve to generate private information or diminish the importance of the forum in helping states communicate.  While the Concert was clearly helpful in some instances, the Concert did not increase transparency as much as it might at first appear, so the first hypothesis (H1) receives only modest support.

            The Concert helped states conduct power-political diplomacy and in three instances the increased speed of communication helped reduce miscalculation (in the Poland-Saxony crisis and twice in the Belgian crisis).  This provides only moderate support for H4 because it is not clear that the states would have miscalculated in the absence of the Concert.

            There is little evidence that Concert diplomacy reduced fears (H3).  Instead, states often learned the extent of the problems they faced, of new counter-coalitions, or that deadlock existed.  When states clarify their positions and stakes, and it increases conflict, this supports H5'.  However, in several instances during the Poland-Saxony and Belgian crises, this clarification was just a stage that then led to further action or resolution.  When clarification of stakes, stances, and options during bargaining helps resolve a crisis, it supports H5, the contention that transparency clarifies positions and reduces conflict.  

            Thus, H5 and H5' may help describe different phases of a crisis.  For example, in Poland-Saxony, forum diplomacy helped states make threats and for a while this increased the chance of war (H5').  In the end though, a final coercive threat broke the deadlock and this supported H5.

            Table 2 summarizes the main findings by hypothesis:

Table 2: Findings by Hypothesis



Strength of Evidence

Overall  Strength of Hypothesis

Regimes provide transparency (H1)


Poland-Saxony: forum enabled and quickened many discussions and deal making, esp. the semi-secret alliance.


Naples and Spain: discussion of regime’s functions.


Belgium: communication of threats, discussion of stakes.









Regimes spread misinformation (H1')

 No evidence found that the disinformation campaign in the Greek case used the forum.



Transparency promotes cooperation (H2) 

Formation: Castlereagh’s statement about the purposed of a Concert.




Transparency reduces unwarranted fears and worst-case assumptions (H3) 

minimal evidence



Transparency confirms fears (H3') 

no evidence



Transparency reduces optimistic miscalculation (H4)


Poland-Saxony: Russia and Prussia back down.


Belgium: France convinced to leave (summer, 1831).


Belgium: France and Prussia from prevented from intervening unilaterally.







Transparency helps plan aggression (H4')

no evidence



Transparency clarifies positions and reduces conflict (H5)


Poland-Saxony: quick making and revealing of the crisis-resolving semi-secret alliance.


Belgium: getting British and French to intervene together.






Transparency clarifies positions and increases conflict (H5') 


Poland-Saxony: increased tensions and threats.


Naples and Spain: clarified Britain’s objections.


Belgium: war scare prior to joint 1832 intervention.







Coding: Strong means that the phenomenon or effect was clear and very influential if not decisive, producing behavior that would be hard to replicate without the regime.  Moderate means that the phenomenon played a discernible and somewhat influential role.  Other factors help explain the outcome.  Weak means that the phenomenon was probably but only weakly present.  Other factors explain most of the outcome.  Failure means that the regime tried to do something and failed, or that something that the regime did was counterproductive.  The overall ratings are judgements based on the significance of transparency and its effects for each hypothesis within the context of each case.




            The Concert of Europe did not eliminate or even significantly reduce realpolitik.  It is not a good place to find idealism, norms, rules, or even much enlightened self-interest.  To this extent, recent realist critiques of the Concert from Kagan and Rendall are valid.  The only significant norm evinced, and the only transformation to persist to this day, was the then-new practice of meeting together in a forum.  However, the lack of norms and rules does not destroy the institutionalist argument because rules and norms are only part of the institutionalist repertoire.

            Realist critics of the Concert have neglected the informational arguments central to institutionalist claims.  According to liberal institutionalists, a major benefit of institutions is their ability to provide more and higher quality information to participants.  The Concert was the first peacetime multilateral crisis management forum in history.  The most basic institutional or regime benefit one should expect from the first such forum is increased transparency, just from the then unprecedented fact of meeting together.  Scholars including Jervis, the Kupchans, and Lipson have looked at transparency and information in the context of the Concert of Europe, but they have not explored it in depth, grappled with the arguments of the transparency pessimists, or compared Concert diplomacy with prior, non-forum diplomacy.[58]  While I stand on their shoulders, I contribute to existing scholarship by doing those tasks and showing more precisely how and when the Concert increased transparency, and when transparency helped the European great powers manage their crises.  The ability to compare diplomacy before and after the Concert distills the effects of forum diplomacy and makes the Concert a valuable case for understanding how multilateral forums work.

            Many scholars and analysts use the Concert as the basis for recommendations that would shape the future of NATO, the U.N., and other regional security organizations from Asia to Africa.  Whatever the deductive appeal of a Concert-like great-power discussion forum or  mechanism for a great-power condominium, these recommendations lose some of their shine if the Concert’s actual paths to peace were in fact more rough and tumble and less norm-driven than the optimists assert.

              Expectations about what security forums can achieve should thus be modest.  Forums simply bring leaders together, making it easier to practice power politics.  Forums do not actively defuse crises or actively help states overcome fears of cooperation the way more formal practices do (such as peacekeeping operations or active mediation).  Modest results for security forums are to be welcomed, because progress in the security arena is hard to come by.[59]  And modest results for security forums do not necessarily indict other regimes, which have been effective and beneficial, especially in the realm of international political economy.[60]

             Do forums necessarily improve transparency and facilitate power politics across space and time?  To extrapolate from my findings, it is probable that forums generally increase transparency, though they likely will do so most in areas where communications are minimal.[61]  Although I find that forum-provided transparency facilitates power politics, it seems reasonable to conclude that forums act as conveyor belts for the predominant political tone of their members, whether it be power politics, a politics of enlightened self-interest, or perhaps something more altruistic.  However, there is no evidence from the cases that increased transparency causes enlightened self-interest or altruism.  This point is underscored by the high level of coercion and frequency of war scares that prevailed during the Concert.  Finally, the areas where communications are minimal and where forums will be most useful –  between North and South Korea, between India and Pakistan, and in Africa    are those where power politics often predominates.

            U.S. Army General Gary Luck, commander of U.S. and U.N. forces in Korea said: “They [North Korea] refuse to meet us at Panmunjom on armistice-related issues, and they refuse to talk to us on the telephone when we’ve called to protest armistice violations.”  He believes that “the lack of communication is dangerous because it would inhibit efforts to defuse a border situation.”[62]  There are no regular meetings and not even a hotline between North and South Korea.  Contact between India and Pakistan is better, but still sporadic. 

            Despite ASEAN, more forums may be useful in Asia.  The Economist reported in June 2002 that ASEAN has “floundered” as a regional forum for discussing security issues.  It recommended that a recent conference of defense ministers from across East Asia become an annual event, because it was “needed in order to increase transparency” in a region “riven by suspicions,” rivalries, and arms races.[63]

            Finally, forums may be helpful in areas of the developing world, particularly Africa, where networks of communication between states and adversaries are less well established.  For example, the U.N. notes the use of forums to reduce tensions between adversaries in the Congo:

            In view of the pervasive fear and mistrust that characterize relations between the Lendu and the Hema [in the Ituri district of Congo], it is essential that a dialogue between the two groups... be initiated and maintained.  In the past, the organization of forums and round tables involving community leaders and traditional chiefs has helped defuse tensions.[64]


            The past record sounds like a good success for forum diplomacy and the effects of transparency, and local conflict resolutions initiatives involving U.N.-facilitated meetings have helped calm parts of the Congo.  However, forums and meetings have had less success in the Ituri district.  As part of the Luanda Agreement of September 2002, the U.N. did subsequently establish a formal forum, the Ituri Pacification Committee, to bring the parties in the area together.  Unfortunately, the conflict continues between the Hema and Lendu and serves as a reminder of the limits of forums.[65]

            This study helps predict what can be expected when forums (and perhaps summits and hotlines) are introduced in areas where adversaries find it hard to communicate.  When communications are increased, incidents can sometimes be resolved with greater ease.  There will still be hard bargaining during crises, but increased transparency clarifies bargaining positions, stakes, and relative power, and this can reduce miscalculation, and spur agreement, successful coercion, or acceptance of deadlock.  Simply put, forums facilitate power politics.  


     [1]  These include: Andrew Bennett and Joseph Lepgold, "Reinventing Collective Security after the Cold War and Gulf Conflict," Political Science Quarterly, 108, no. 2 (summer 1993);  Douglas M. Gibler, “East or Further East?” Journal of Peace Research, 36, no. 6 (November 1999);  James Goodby, "Commonwealth and Concert: Organizing Principles of Post-Containment Order in Europe," Washington Quarterly, 14, no. 3 (summer 1991);  Charles A. Kupchan and Clifford A. Kupchan, "Concerts, Collective Security, and the Future of Europe," International Security, 16, no. 1 (summer 1991);  John Mueller, "A New Concert of Europe," Foreign Policy, no. 77 (winter 1989-90);  William Odom, "How to Create a True World Order: Establish a Concert of Great Powers," Orbis, 13, #2 (spring 1995);  Louise Richardson, “The Concert of Europe and Security Management in the Nineteenth Century,” in Imperfect Unions: Security Institutions over Time and Space, eds. Helga Haftendorn, Robert O. Keohane, and Celeste A. Wallander (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999);  Richard Rosecrance, "A New Concert of Powers," Foreign Affairs 71, no. 2 (spring 1992);  Stephen Van Evera, remarks at a roundtable on Offensive Realism, Radical Nationalism, and the Bush Doctrine of Preemption, APSA, Philadelphia, PA., August 29, 2003;  and Philip Zelikow, "The New Concert of Europe," Survival, 34, no. 2 (summer 1992).

     [2]   In addition to many of the above, see also: Amitav Acharya, “A Concert of Asia?” Survival, 41, no. 3 (autumn 1999);  Armstrong Matiu Adejo, “From OAU to AU: New Wine in Old Bottle?” paper prepared for CODESRIA’s 10TH General Assembly on "Africa in the New Millennium", Kampala, Uganda, December 8-12  2002;  Aspen Institute, Managing Conflict in the Post-Cold War World: The Role of Intervention, Report of the Aspen Institute Conference, August 2-6, 1995 (Washington, D.C.: Aspen Institute, 1996);  Nicholas Khoo and Michael L.R. Smith, “A ‘Concert of Asia’?” Policy Review, no. 108 (August & September 2001);  Winrich Kühne, in cooperation with Jochen Prantl, "The Security Council and the G8 in the New Millennium: Who is in Charge of International Peace and Security?" Stiftung Wissenschaft Und Politik (SWP), Research Institute for International Affairs, 5th International Workshop, (June 30 - July 1, 2000), Berlin, Germany;  Gani Joses Yoroms and Emmanuel Kwesi Aning , “West African Regional Security in the Post Liberian Conflict Area: Issues and Perspectives,” CDR Working Paper 97.7 (November 1997), Institute for International Studies Department for Development Research (Former Centre for Development Research), Copenhagen, Denmark;  Mark W. Zacher, “The Conundrums of Power Sharing: The Politics of Security Council Reform,” prepared for the conference on the United Nations and Global Security, Centre of International Relations, Liu Institute for Global Issues, University of British Columbia (January 18-19 2003), Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

     [3]  Jervis, “Security Regimes,” in International Regimes, ed. Stephen D. Krasner (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1983), 178.

     [4]   Richard B. Elrod, "The Concert of Europe, A Fresh Look at an International System," World Politics, XXVII, no. 2 (January 1976);  Paul Gorden Lauren, "Crisis Prevention in Nineteenth Century Diplomacy," in Managing U.S.-Soviet Rivalry: Problems of Crisis Prevention, ed. Alexander L. George (Boulder: Westview Press, 1983); Paul W. Schroeder, "The 19th Century International System: Changes in the Structure," World Politics, 28, no. 2 (January 1986).

     [5]  Paul W. Schroeder, The Transformation of European Politics: 1763-1848 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994), 580.  For a symposium that largely reaffirms Schroeder’s interpretation, see The International History Review, XVI, no. 4 (November 1994) including H. M. Scott, “Paul W. Schroeder’s International System: The View from Vienna;”  Charles Ingrao, “Paul W. Schroeder’s Balance of Power: Stability or Anarchy?;”  T. C. W. Blanning, “Paul W. Schroeder’s Concert of Europe;”  and Jack S. Levy, “The Theoretical Foundations of Paul W. Schroeder’s International System,” and Schroeder, Balance of Power and Political Equilibrium: A Response.” A somewhat more critical symposium is found in the American Historical Review, 97, no. 3 (June 1992) which includes Paul W. Schroeder, "Did the Vienna Settlement Rest on a Balance of Power?"  Enno E. Kraehe, "A Bipolar Balance of Power;" Robert Jervis, "A Political Science Perspective on the Balance of Power and the Concert;"  Wolf Gruner, "Was There a Reformed Balance of Power System of Cooperative Great Power Hegemony?" and Schroeder, “A Mild Rejoinder.”

     [6]  Henry A. Kissinger, A World Restored: Metternich, Castlereagh, and the Problems of Peace, 1812-1822 (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1973) and W. N. Medlicott, Bismarck, Gladstone, and the Concert of Europe (London: University of London/Athlone Press, 1956).

     [7]   Korina Kagan, “The Myth of the European Concert: The Realist-Institutionalist Debate and Great Power Behavior in the Eastern Question, 1821-41,” Security Studies, 7, no. 2 (winter 1997/98): 57, and Matthew Rendall, “Russia, the Concert of Europe, and Greece 1821-29: A Test of Hypotheses about the Vienna System,” Security Studies, 9, no. 4 (summer 2000).  See also Bradley A. Thayer, “An Offensive Realist Examination of the Concert of Europe” presented at the American Political Science Association conference (Boston: August 2002).

     [8]    It is possible that regimes may also spread misinformation, and I cover this point in my discussion of hypothesis H1': Regimes Spread Misinformation, below.

     [9]  Roy Bridge, “Allied Diplomacy in Peacetime: The Failure of Congress ‘System,’ 1815-1823,” in Europe’s Balance of Power: 1815-1848, ed. Alan Sked (London: Macmillan Press, 1979), 47.

     [10]   Points made by Robert Keohane “Institutional Theory and the Realist Challenge after the Cold War,” in Neorealism and Neoliberalism: The Contemporary Debate, ed. David A. Baldwin (New York: Columbia University Press, 1993), and David Lake in “Beyond Anarchy: The Importance of Security Institutions,” International Security, 26, no. 1 (summer 2001): 129-130.

     [11]  Exemplar institutionalist/cooperation scholarship, emphasizing work relevant to security issues, includes: Robert Axelrod, The Evolution of Cooperation (New York: Basic Books, 1984);  George W. Downs and David M. Rocke, Tacit Bargaining, Arms Races, and Arms Control (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1990);  Matthew Evangelista, “Cooperation Theory and Disarmament Negotiations in the 1950s,” World Politics, XLII, no. 4 (July 1990);  James D. Fearon, “Signaling versus the Balance of Power and Interests: An Empirical Test of a Crisis Bargaining Model,” Journal of Conflict Resolution, 38, no. 2 (June 1994);  Robert O. Keohane, “The Demand for International Regimes,” in International Regimes, ed. Krasner, 159-167;  Helen V. Milner, Interests, Institutions, and Information: Domestic Politics and International Relations (Princeton: Princeton University Press,1997);  James D. Morrow, “Modeling the Forms of International Cooperation: Distribution vs. Information, International Organization, 48, no. 3 (summer 1994);  and Elinor Ostrom, Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1990); as well as many of the contributions in Cooperation Under Anarchy, ed. Kenneth Oye (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1986), in particular Oye, “Explaining Cooperation under Anarchy: Hypotheses and Strategies;”  Robert Jervis, “From Balance to Concert;”  Stephen Van Evera, “Why Cooperation Failed in 1914”;  George W. Downs, David M. Rocke, and Randolph M. Siverson, “Arms Races and Cooperation”; and Robert Axelrod and Robert O. Keohane, “Achieving Cooperation under Anarchy: Strategies and Institutions.” 

     [12]  Jervis, “From Balance to Concert,” 73-76, Kupchan and Kupchan, “Concerts, Collective Security, and the Future of Europe,” 136, and Lipson, “Is the Future of Collective Security Like the Past?,”  in Collective Security beyond the Cold War, ed. George Downs (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1994), 109-110, 125;  and Charles Lipson, “Are Security Regimes Possible? Historical Cases and Modern Issues,” in Regional Security Regimes: Israel and Its Neighbors, ed. Efraim Inbar  (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1995).  See also John Lewis  Gaddis’ work on transparency: “The Long Peace: Elements of Stability in the Postwar International System,” in The Cold War and After: Prospects for Peace, ed. Sean M. Lynn-Jones (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1991), 25 and Gaddis, The Long Peace: Inquiries Into the History of the Cold War (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1987), chapter 7, “Learning to Live with Transparency: The Emergence of a Reconnaissance Satellite Regime.”

     [13] See Arms Control Association, Arms Control and National Security: An Introduction (Washington, D.C.: Arms Control Association, 1989), 5-15;  Bernard Brodie, “On the Objectives of Arms Control,” in The Use of Force, 3 ed. eds.  Robert J. Art and Kenneth N. Waltz (Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1988), 629-633;  Randall Forsberg, “The Freeze and Beyond,” in The Future of Arms Control, eds. Desmond Ball and Andrew Mack (Sydney: Australian National University Press, 1987);  George Rathjens, “The Dynamic of the Arms Race,” Readings from Scientific American, Progress in Arms Control? (San Francisco: W. H. Freeman, 1979);  Thomas C. Schelling and Morton H. Halperin, Strategy and Arms Control (Washington, D.C.: Pergammon-Brassey’s, 1985; originally published in 1975), chapters 3 and 5, with a good discussion of verification in chapter 9;  and Thomas C. Schelling, Arms and Influence (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1966), chapter 7.

     [14]  Bernard I. Finel and Kristin M. Lord, eds., Power and Conflict in the Age of Transparency. (New York: Palgrave, 2000);  Ann Florini, “The End of Secrecy,” Foreign Policy, 111, (summer 1998);  James Marquardt, Why Transparency In International Relations Is Not What It Appears To Be, Ph.D. Dissertation, (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1998);  Ronald Mitchell, “Sources of Transparency: Information Systems in International Regimes,” International Studies Quarterly, 42 (1998).  See also Kimberly Marten Zisk, “Contact Lenses: The Realist Neglect of Transparency and US-Russian Military Ties,” Program on New Approaches to Russian Security, Working Paper Series no. 2 (Davis Center for Russian Studies, Harvard University,  September1997).

     [15]  Blainey, The Causes of War, 3 ed. (New York: The Free Press, 1988), 144-145;  see also, Stephen Van Evera, Causes of War: Power and the Roots of Conflict (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1999).

     [16]  Oye, Cooperation Under Anarchy, 7.

     [17]  Leo Gershoy, From Despotism to Revolution: 1763-1789 (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1944), 174-181;  Hajo Holborn,  A History of Modern Germany: 1648-1840 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1964), 253;  Schroeder, Transformation, 15-16;  Albert Sorel, The Eastern Question in the Eighteenth Century: The Partition of Poland and the Treaty of Kainardji (New York: Howard Fertig, 1969), 161-162.

     [18]  Sorel, Eastern Question in the Eighteenth Century, 173.  I cannot tell how long it took this information to flow from the British ambassador in Turkey (who learned of the shipment on July 25) to Paris to Austria and on to Russia.

     [19]  Additional sources used for this section include:  M.S. Anderson, Europe in the Eighteenth Century: 1713-1783, 2 ed. (London: Longman Group, 1976), 186-192;  Arthur Hassall, The Balance of Power, 1715-1789.  Period VI (New York: MacMillan, 1898);  R. B. Mowat, Europe, 1715-1815, (New York: Longmans, Green, & Co., 1929), 113-115.

     [20]  See Inis Claude, Swords Into Plowshares: The Problems and Progress of International Organization, 4th ed. (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1984), 25, 31;  F. H. Hinsley, Power and the Pursuit of Peace: Theory and Practice in the History of Relations Between States (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1967), 198-199;  Jervis, “Security Regimes,” 178;  Richard Langhorne, "The regulation of diplomatic practice: the beginnings to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Practice, 1961," Review of International Studies, 18, no. 1 (January 1992): 318;  Harold Nicholson, The Congress of Vienna, A Study in Allied Unity: 1812-1822 (New York: Harcourt, Brace, and Company, 1946), 272-273;  Richard N. Rosecrance, Action and Reaction in World Politics: International Systems in Perspective (Boston: Little, Brown, 1963);  H. G. Schenk,  The Aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars: The Concert of Europe - an Experiment (New York: Howard Fertig, 1967), 213.  Some argue that the Concert’s effectiveness ended with the Crimean War including Paul W. Schroeder, Austria, Great Britain, and the Crimean War: The Destruction of the European Concert (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1972) and Elrod, “Concert of Europe,” 159.  Others contend that World War I marked the end of the Concert, including K. J. Holsti, “Governance with government: polyarchy in nineteenth-century European International Politics” in Governance Without Government: Order and Change in World Politics eds. James N. Rosenau and Ernst-Otto Czempiel, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), 50-51 and Lauren, "Crisis Prevention in Nineteenth Century Diplomacy," 36.

     [21]  Balance of threat theory posits that states ally with each other to secure themselves from threats.  For more, see Stephen M. Walt, The Origins of Alliances (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1987).

     [22]  Sir Charles Webster, The Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 1815-1822: Britain and the European Alliance (London: G. Bell and Sons, 1947.  First published in 1925), 56. 

     [23]  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, 501, and Frederick H. Hartmann, ed., Basic Documents of International Relations (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1951), 1-4.

     [24]  Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 54.

     [25]  Hartmann, Basic Documents, 5.

     [26]  René Albrecht-Carrié, A Diplomatic History of Europe Since The Congress Of Vienna, revised edition (New York: Harper & Row, 1973), 24, and Sir Charles Webster, The Congress of Vienna: 1814-1815 (New York: Barnes and Noble, 1969.  Originally published by the British Foreign Office in 1919), 163.

     [27]  Hartmann, Basic Documents, 6-8.

     [28]  Albrecht-Carrié, Diplomatic History of Europe, 19;  Kissinger, A World Restored, 189-90; Nicholson, The Congress of Vienna, 250; and Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 59.

     [29]  This idea was first floated at the Congress of Aix-la-Chapelle by Tsar Alexander.  Castlereagh vigorously objected to this notion of a conservative collective security system designed to interfere in the domestic politics of its members and it never got off the ground at Aix.   Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 307-8. 

     [30]   Harold Temperley, The Foreign Policy of Canning, 1822-1827: England, The Neo-Holy Alliance, and the New World (London: G. Bell and Sons, 1925), 73, and Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 298-307, esp. 304.

     [31]  Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 306.

     [32] Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 56-57.

     [33]  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, 524.

     [34]  From a letter from the Prince de Talleyrand to King Louis XVII, Vienna, October 25, 1814, in Memoirs of the Prince de Talleyrand, ed. Duc de Broglie, trans. Raphael de Beaufort, vol. II (New York: Putnam’s Sons, 1891), 277.

     [35]  in ed. C. K. Webster, British Diplomacy 1813-1815: Select Documents Dealing with the Reconstruction of Europe (London: G. Bell and Sons, Ltd., 1921), 277-278.

     [36]  Webster, Congress of Vienna, 135.  See also Nicholson, Congress of Vienna, 178.

     [37] General references for this section include Edward Vose Gulick, Europe's Classic Balance of Power (New York: W. W. Norton, 1955), 189-243;  Kissinger, A World Restored, 152-174;  Nicholson, Congress of Vienna), 148-181;  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, pp.523-538; Albert Sorel, L’Europe et la Revolution Francaise, 7th ed., vol. 8 (Paris: Plon, 1908), 393-401;  Webster, Congress of Vienna, 117-141;  Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, vol. 1, 122, 327-387.

     [38]  Transformation of European Politics, 537-38.

     [39]  Transformation of European Politics, 558.

     [40]   W. P. Cresson, The Holy Alliance: The European Background of the Monroe Doctrine (New York: Oxford University Press, 1922), 99.  “European Alliance” refers to the Holy Alliance.

     [41]  Kissinger, World Restored, 275.

     [42]  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, 611.

     [43]  Quoted in Norman Rich, Great Power Diplomacy: 1814-1914 (New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 1992), 40.

     [44]  Temperley, Foreign Policy of Canning 1822-1827, 73.  For the general information presented in this section, see Bridge, “Allied Diplomacy;”  Roger Bullen, “The Great Powers and the Iberian Peninsula, 1815-1848,” in Europe’s Balance of Power, ed. Sked;  Kissinger, A World Restored, 247-285;  Irby C. Nichols, Jr. The European Pentarchy and the Congress of Verona, 1822 (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1971);  Walter Alison Philips, The Confederation of Europe: a Study of the European Alliance, 1813-1823, as an Experiment in the International Organization of Peace, 2 ed. (New York: Longmans, Green and Co. 1920), 164-66;  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, 606-614, 621-628;  Temperley, Foreign Policy of Canning, chapters 1, 3, 4;  and Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 228-347.

     [45]  Kissinger, A World Restored, 293 and 300.

     [46]  in The Foreign Ministers of Alexander I: Political Attitudes and the Conduct of Russian Diplomacy, 1801-1825 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1969), 255.

     [47]  Temperley, Foreign Policy of Canning, 323.

     [48]   Nichols, European Pentarchy, 254 (the first quote is Nichols citing Friedrich von Gentz, the Austrian publicist).

     [49]  Transformation of European Politics, 621.

     [50]  Quoted in Kissinger, A World Restored, 304.

     [51]  paraphrased by Schroeder in Transformation of European Politics, 621.

     [52] Matthew Anderson, “Russia and the Eastern Question, 1821-1841,” in Europe’s Balance of Power, ed. Sked, 82.  Other sources consulted for this section include René Albrecht-Carrié, The Concert of Europe: 1815: 1914 (New York: Harper Torchbooks, 1968), 99-113;  Barbara Jelavich, Russia’s Balkan Entanglements, 1806-1914  (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1991), 49-75;  Kissinger, A World Restored, 286-311;  Matthew Tobias Rendall, Russia, the Concert of Europe and the Near East, 1821-41: A Status Quo State in the Vienna System, PhD Dissertation, (New York, Columbia University, 2000);  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, 614-621, 636-664;  Temperley, Foreign Policy of Canning, 319 - 362, 390-409;  Webster, Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, 349-400.

     [53]  G. W. T. Omond, “Belgium: 1830-1839,” in The Cambridge History of British Foreign Policy: 1783:1919, vol. 2, eds. Sir A. W. Ward and G. P. Gooch (New York: Macmillan, 1923), 144-146, quote on 145..

     [54]  Omond, “Belgium,” 153-154.

     [55]  Transformation of European Politics, 690.

     [56]  Sources consulted for this section include: J. A. Betley, Belgium and Poland in International Relations 1830-1831 (The Hague: Mouton & Co. 1960);  Albrecht-Carrié, Concert of Europe, 60-98 (which has the text of the final treaty and several of the 70 great power protocols - something in between minutes of meetings and a U.N.-type resolution  - that document the diplomatic negotiations);  Albrecht-Carrié, Diplomatic History of Europe, 31-36;  Omond, “Belgium;”  J. S. Fishman, Diplomacy and Revolution: The London Conference of 1830 and the Belgian Revolt (Amsterdam: CHEV publisher, 1988);  Fl. de Lannoy, Histoire Diplomatique de L’Independance Belge (Brussels: Librairie Albert Dewit, 1930);  Schroeder, Transformation of European Politics, 670-691;  Harold Temperley and Lillian M. Penson, eds., Foundations of British Foreign Policy from Pitt (1792) to Salisbury (1902) (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1938), 88-100;  Sir Charles Webster, The Foreign Policy of Palmerston, 1830-1841, Britain, the Liberal Movement, and the Eastern Question, vol. 1 (London: G. Bell & Sons, 1951), 89-176.

     [57]  From letters between Talleyrand and the Duc de Broglie in Memoirs of the Prince de Talleyrand, vol. 5, ed. de Broglie, 12-15, and footnote 1, 12.

     [58]  See footnote .

     [59]  Charles Lipson, "International Cooperation in Economic and Security Affairs,” World Politics, 37, no. 1 (October, 1984).

     [60]  See for example G. John Ikenberry, After Victory: Institutions, Strategic Restraint, and the Rebuilding of Order after Major Wars (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2001).

     [61]  see Dan Lindley, Promoting Peace with Information: Transparency as a Tool of Security Regimes, book manuscript.

     [62]  Bill Gertz, “U.S. Commander in Korea sees North Near Disintegration,” The Washington Times, March 16, 1996, 7.

     [63]   “China Feels Encircled,” Economist, June 6, 2002.

     [64]  United Nations Security Council, Special Report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic of the Congo, S/2002/1005, (September 10, 2002), para. 59, 10.

     [65]  United Nations Security Council, Fourteenth Report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic of the Congo, S/2003/1098, (November 17, 2002). Frank Nyakairu, Kefa Atibuni and Tabu Butagira, “Hema, Lendu peace deal flops in Arua,” The Monitor, Kampala, Uganda, January 1, 2003, Posted to the web January 2, 2003 at <<http://allafrica.com/stories/200301020580.html>>.