• Gian Luca Gardini
  • Maria Hermínia Tavares de Almeida
Part of the Palgrave Studies in International Relations Series book series (PSIR)


Brazil has risen. Its international position has never been as central to world affairs, or its global presence as strongly felt, as in the last ten years. Its recently acquired status and recognition as a global player and influential actor are unlikely to recede. The might of its economy, by now the seventh largest in the world in GDP terms (World Bank, 2014), and its international activism have attracted considerable attention from academic, political, and economic analysts (Sweig, 2010; The Economist, 2010; Burges, 2013). However, the limitations of Brazil’s capacity and will to turn its potential power into actual leverage internationally have been identified too. Some have stressed the reluctance of Brazil’s regional partners to follow Brasilia’s policy preferences and agenda (Schirm, 2010; Malamud, 2011). Others have simply omitted Brazil from the list of those likely to shape the world in the 21st century (Kagan, 2008; Russell Mead, 2015). Still others have cast doubt on Brazil’s immediate ability to drive change and promote values globally (Castañeda, 2010). In fact the association of Brazil with concepts such as power or leadership seems to be a contested and complex one, leading some to conclude that Brazil is perhaps a sui generis middle power (Hirst and Soares de Lima, 2006).


Foreign Policy Latin American Country Actual Leverage International Politics Veto Player 
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© Gian Luca Gardini and Maria Hermínia Tavares de Almeida 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gian Luca Gardini
  • Maria Hermínia Tavares de Almeida

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