Smart Power

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Smart Power refers to the combination of Hard Power, the use of economic incentives or military strength[1]; and Soft Power, the ability to attract, persuade or co-opt[2], to influence the behaviour of others.

It is described as an approach that underscores the necessity of a strong military, but also invests heavily in diplomacy, alliances, partnerships, and capacity-building initiatives of all levels in order to expand power and influence in ways that are cost-effective and politically legitimate[3] [4].

It is argued that the most effective strategies in foreign policy today require the use of Smart Power resources; as employing only Hard Power or only Soft Power resources in a given situation will usually prove inadequate[5].


  • Wikipedia, Smart Power: Overview of Smart Power
  • Joseph Nye (2004), "Smart Power in the Global Information Age: From Realism to Globalization". London, New York: Routledge
  • Ernest Wilson (2008), "Hard Power, Soft Power, Smart Power." The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, March 2008, pp.110-124, Sage Publications: Los Angeles


  1. Public Diplomacy Wikia, Hard Power, Public Diplomacy Wikia website, accessed 25 March 2015
  2. Joseph Nye (2005), "Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics", U.S.: PublicAffairs
  3. CSIS Commission on Smart Power (2007), CSIS Commission on Smart Power: a smarter, more secure America, Center for Strategic & International Studies, CSIS website, accessed 25 March 2015
  4. Chester Crocker, Fen Hampson, Pamela Aall, eds, (2007), Leashing the Dogs of War: Conflict Management in a Divided World. Washington, DC: US Institute of Peace Press. p. 13
  5. Joseph Nye (2004), "Smart Power in the Global Information Age: From Realism to Globalization". London; New York: Routledge