Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/4715
The BRICs and international relations: An assessment of the potential leaders in a global future
The term BRICs has been the subject of much debate since it was coined in 2001 to define the largest emerging markets in the world. This thesis focuses on the BRICs; their development over the past decade, their current situation and, finally, their future prospects. First, the term itself is discussed and potential new BRICs are identified. Then, in order to see if the rise of BRICs can be seen as a uniform long-term development in international relations or simply as a one-off, each of the BRICs is assessed individually so as to provide some clarity about their strengths and weaknesses. This assessment provides a foundation for discussion about the role of the BRICs internationally and enables for a thorough comparison of the BRICs thus shedding some light on the validity of the term as a whole. Finally, some of the implications that the rise of the BRICs carries with it for the current structure of the international system will be considered and potential institutional changes examined. The conclusion is that the ultimate success of the BRICs hinges on many factors and that the international system must work towards including them in its institutional framework if their rise is to be peaceful and in accordance with human rights.