This thesis studies the effect that US and Russian soft power has on the voting behavior of Member States in the UN General Assembly and asks whether soft power possesses real capabilities to interfere with and promote foreign policy goals. In order to examine this relationship a new dataset is created that compares the level of public support from Member States towards the United States and Russia, and the UN General Assembly voting records of those Member States. Three hypotheses were made to test the relationship between positive levels of soft power among Member States (favorable opinions), and negative soft power among Member States (unfavorable opinions), as well as the relative effect that soft power has on democracies and non-democracies. The dataset was analyzed using regression analysis. This study provided mixed results, finding evidence that suggested soft power’s presence to varying degrees, but also found that non-democracies were influenced by soft power slightly more than their democratic counterparts.


Lantis, Jeffrey


Political Science


International Relations


Soft Power, Regression Analysis, United Nations, United States, Russia, Democracy

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2015 Henry B. Knecht