Iran, the Pioneer of Nuclear Energy in the Persian Gulf: An Insight to 2030

Asieh Haieri Yazdi

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The global nuclear energy scene is changing rapidly. Some countries are phasing out nuclear technology. Some are in the nuclear renaissance, planning to promote the most ambitious new construction programme. Statemen make the proper decision in nuclear policy striking the best balance of domestic energy policies, energy-concerned foreign policies, and the dynamism of international relations. This study tries to analyse the political aspects of nuclear programmes in foreign policies and international relations in the Persian Gulf region.
The study examines the reasons why oil & gas producer states want to acquire nuclear energy/weapons. It reviews the structural, psychological, and technological dimensions of nuclear politics in a neoclassical realism paradigm to find the balancing energy strategies. The research examines policy in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Iran. Different states' power and different perceptions of the international system allow for explaining various role players in foreign policy and energy politics.
The theoretical starting point of this thesis is Neoclassical Realism in the literature of international relations. This theory offers venues for the analysis of energy diplomacy. The theory concentrates on material power and underlines the importance of state domestic structure, as well as the statesmen’s perception of the international system. These aspects create the opportunity to explain the different positions of energy choices in foreign policies of different states.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-88
JournalIranian Review of Foreign Affairs
Issue number35
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jan 2024


  • Persian Gulf
  • Energy Security
  • Energy Transition
  • Iran Nuclear Programme
  • International Relations


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