Theories of international relations and their predictions for the proliferation of drones
Mikulic, Michael Christian
Drones are constantly making national headlines as they are used increasingly in war by the United States and Israel. This thesis is concerned with drones, specifically, their possible diffusion among countries. Three major theories of international relations hypothesize potential ways in which drones may proliferate. The three theories are: offense-defense realism, power transition, and adoption-capacity. Each theory’s predictions are compared to the available data concerning drone proliferation and then assessed. Ultimately, I find evidence that a case can be made for all theories, with the caveat that neither theory is fully developed. Future direction should assess many of the issues.