Europeanization of member state’s foreign policy: Estonian foreign policy Europeanization towards the Republic of Turkey
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This purpose of this master thesis is to study the influence of the European Union to Estonian foreign policy towards the Republic of Turkey. It is thriving to answer the raised question by applying the concept of Europeanization to the empirical case. Through research, this thesis is aiming to contribute to the existing literature by two aspects: theoretical and empirical. This research paper offers new conceptualization to the Europeanization of foreign policy. It argues that previously existing models do not offer comprehensive tools for systematic analysis and have many shortcomings for foreign policy conceptualization. This comes from the complexity of foreign policy analysis that requires focusing not only on the ‘top-down’ but also on the ‘bottom-up’ approach combining identity and national projection dimensions to the usual policy elements to the analysis. This thesis aims to fill that gap in the literature. The empirical contribution thrives from the specific case that allows also to examine how the level of Europeanization is dependent on the pre-accession relationship, memberships to other international organisations and inter-union tensions. Estonia and Turkey have a long history of strong bilateral relationship that dates back to the foundation of both republics regardless of the geographical and cultural distance. This relationship has been supported by a mutual support to each other’s aspirations to belong to the Western world by joining international organisations. The relationship got a whole new dimension with Estonia’s accession to the European Union and NATO in 2004. Estonia’s wish to keep both NATO and the European Union strong requires skilful diplomacy also with Turkey that is strongly linked to both organisations. This thesis is aiming to provide valuable empirical addition to understanding the complexity of the relationship between Estonia and Turkey as well as to understand better the role of small states’ foreign policy in the European Union context.