University of Ljubljana – Faculty of Social Sciences, Slovenia


Studies built on dependency and world-system theory using network approaches have showed that international trade is structured into clusters of ‘core’ and ‘peripheral’ countries performing distinct functions. However, few have used these methods to investigate how sanctions affect the position of the countries involved in the capitalist world-economy. Yet, this topic has acquired pressing relevance due to the emergence of economic warfare as a key geopolitical weapon since the 1950s. And even more so in light of the preeminent role that sanctions have played in the US and their allies’ response to the Russian-Ukrainian war. Applying several clustering techniques designed for complex and temporal networks, this paper shows that a shift in the pattern of commerce away from sanctioning countries and towards neutral/friendly ones. Additionally, there are suggestions that these shifts may lead to the creation of an alternative ‘core’ that interacts with the world-economy’s periphery bypassing traditional ‘core’ countries such as EU member States and the US.


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