Superseding Middle Power Theory with the Keystone Concept: The Persuasive Case of Azerbaijan and the Silk Road Region

The ‘keystone state’ concept better explains geopolitical and geoeconomic developments in the ‘Silk Road region’ than any extant alternatives, including, most relevantly, anything associated with the term ‘middle power’, whether remaining tethered to ‘middle power theory’ or resulting from (in some cases laudable) contemporary attempts to break away from its theoretical or normative limitations. The article’s coda outlines five characteristics of ‘Silk Road values’ as a way to explain one important aspect of the region’s strategic trajectory and its nascent institutional arrangements.

Authors: Damjan Krnjević Mišković