In his 2009 book, The Politics of Linkage, Brian Bow argued that the bases for cooperation and restraint in Canada-US relations had shifted after the 1970s, and that in future the bilateral relationship would be driven mostly by shifting transnational coalitions and inflexible domestic institutions. The Harper government’s approach to the relationship seemed to be based on a naïve aspiration to return to the early Cold War “special relationship,” and to have failed in ways that Bow’s argument would have anticipated. But the picture is a little more complicated than that, and Harper’s track record suggests some subtler lessons for Canada-US relations after the coming elections.
Speaker: Brian Bow is Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies at Dalhousie University. He has published a number of books and articles on Canadian foreign policy, Canada-US relations, and regional politics in North America. His current research is on the political management of network-driven policy coordination in post-NAFTA North America.