The Art of Sanctions

A View from the Field

Richard Nephew

Columbia University Press

The Art of Sanctions

Google Preview

Pub Date: December 2017

ISBN: 9780231180269

240 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $35.00£27.95

Pub Date: December 2017

ISBN: 9780231542555

240 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $34.99£27.95

The Art of Sanctions

A View from the Field

Richard Nephew

Columbia University Press

Economic sanctions are intended to be a nonmilitary means used by states to force their prerogatives on other states, entities, and individuals. Yet while sanctions have been increasingly used as a foreign policy tool, they are ineffective if executed without a clear strategy that is responsive to the nature and changing behavior of the target. In The Art of Sanctions, Richard Nephew offers a much-needed practical framework that focuses not just on the design of sanctions but, crucially, on how to decide when sanctions have achieved maximum effectiveness and how to improve them along the way.

Nephew—a lead participant in the design and implementation of sanctions on Iran—develops guidelines for interpreting targets' responses to sanctions based on two critical factors: pain and resolve. The efficacy of sanctions lies in the application of pain against a target, but targets may have significant resolve to resist, tolerate, or overcome this pain. Understanding the interplay of pain and resolve is central to using sanctions successfully and humanely. With attention to these two key variables, and to how they change over the course of the sanctions regime, policy makers can pinpoint when diplomatic intervention is likely to succeed or when escalation is necessary. Focusing on lessons from sanctions on both Iran and Iraq, Nephew provides policy makers with practical guidance on how to calibrate pain and measure resolve in the service of strong and successful sanctions regimes.
Richard Nephew's excellent book provides a basic framework for effectively employing sanctions. It makes a very important contribution to our understanding of how to use these tools—particularly from a practitioner's perspective. Eric B. Lorber, Financial Integrity Network

About the Author

Richard Nephew is a senior research scholar and program director at the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs. Prior to this, Nephew spent over a decade in the U.S. government, serving as director for Iran on the National Security Council and as deputy coordinator for sanctions policy at the State Department. Nephew was the lead sanctions expert for the U.S. team negotiating with Iran from August 2013 to December 2014.