Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/4750
Small States - States of Peace? A Case-Study of Iceland
In recent years small states have been given special interest in the field of international relations, mainly regarding their tendency to be peaceful. The aim of this thesis is to
examine, through theory and discussion, the peacefulness of small states. Peace itself
will be discussed and what it means for a country to be peaceful, based on the basic
idea of negative peace but also the more modern idea of positive peace. Those findings
will then be applied to small states, and with a view to that the case of Iceland will be
examined. The discussion will be firmly placed in the 21st century and therefore focused
upon recent events.
The final conclusion of the thesis is that small states might have structural
advantages when it comes to achieving internal and external peace, but they are not
naturally more peaceful than other states. This can be seen through the case of Iceland.
Ultimately, conflict is not inevitable and by ministering to the self-reinforcing
relationship of peace and prosperity, a peaceful state can be maintained. Small states do have characteristics that help them be peaceful, but like any other states they have to constantly work at staying peaceful.