In the field of international relations, a sphere of influence (SOI) is a spatial region or concept division over which a state or organization has a level of cultural, economic, military, or political exclusivity, accommodating to the interests of powers outside the borders of the state that controls it.
While there may be a formal alliance or other treaty obligations between the influenced and influencer, such formal arrangements are not necessary and the influence can often be more of an example of soft power. Similarly, a formal alliance does not necessarily mean that one country lies within another's sphere of influence. High levels of exclusivity have historically been associated with higher levels of conflict.
In more extreme cases, a country within the "sphere of influence" of another may become a subsidiary of that state and serve in effect as a satellite state or de facto colony. The system of spheres of influence by which powerful nations intervene in the affairs of others continues to the present. It is often analyzed in terms of superpowers, great powers, and/or middle powers.
Sometimes portions of a single country can fall into two distinct spheres of influence. In the colonial era the buffer states of Iran and Thailand, lying between the empires of Britain/Russia and Britain/France respectively, were divided between the spheres of influence of the imperial powers. Likewise, after World War II, Germany was divided into four occupation zones, which later consolidated into West Germany and East Germany, the former a member of NATO and the latter a member of the Warsaw Pact.
Many areas of the world are considered to have inherited culture from a previous sphere of influence, that while perhaps today halted, continues to share the same culture. Examples include the Anglosphere, Arab World, Eurosphere, Francophonie, Françafrique, Germanosphere, Indosphere, Latin Europe/Latin America, Lusophonie, Turkosphere, Chinese cultural sphere, Slavisphere, Hispanophone, Malay World, as well as many others.
An example of spheres of influence was China in the late 19th and early 20th Century, when Britain, France, Germany, and Russia (later replaced by Japan) had de facto control over large swaths of territory. These were taken by means of military attacks or threats to force Chinese authorities to sign unequal treaties and very long term "leases".
In December 1897 German Kaiser Wilhelm II declared his intent to seize territory in China, precipitating the scramble to demarcate zones of influence in China. The German government acquired, in Shandong province, exclusive control over developmental loans, mining, and railway ownership, while Russia gained, in addition to the previous tax exemption for trade in Mongolia and Xinjiang, economic powers similar to Germany's over Fengtian, Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces. France gained a sphere over Yunnan, Guangxi and Guangdong provinces, Japan over Fujian province, and the British Empire over the whole Yangtze River Valley and Tibet. Only Italy's request for Zhejiang province was declined by the Chinese government. These do not include the lease and concession territories where the foreign powers had full authority.
In 1902, Winston Churchill gave a speech regarding the division of China by the great powers, where he declared that "we shall have to take the Chinese in hand and regulate them", "I believe in the ultimate partition of China" and "the Aryan stock is bound to triumph".
The Russian government militarily occupied their zone, imposed their law and schools, seized mining and logging privileges, settled their citizens, and even established their municipal administration on several cities, the latter without Chinese consent.
The powers (and the United States) might have their own courts, post offices, commercial institutions, railroads, and gunboats in what was on paper Chinese territory. However, the foreign powers and their control in some cases could have been exaggerated; the local government persistently restricted further encroachment. The system ended after the Second World War.
On September 6, 1899, U.S. Secretary of State John Hay sent notes to the major powers (France, Germany, Britain, Italy, Japan, and Russia), asking them to declare formally that they would uphold Chinese territorial and administrative integrity and would not interfere with the free use of the treaty ports within their spheres of influence in China, as the US felt threatened by other powers' much larger spheres of influence in China and worried that it might lose access to the Chinese market should the country be partitioned. Although treaties made after 1900 refer to this "Open Door Policy", competition among the various powers for special concessions within China for railroad rights, mining rights, loans, foreign trade ports, and so forth, continued unabated, with the US itself contradicting the policy by agreeing to recognise the Japanese sphere in the Lansing-Ishii Agreement.
In 1910, the great powers, Britain, France, Germany, United States, and later, Russia and Japan, ignored the Open Door Policy to form a banking consortium, consisting of national banking groups backed by respective governments, through which all foreign loans to China were monopolised, granting the powers political influence over China and reducing economic competition between foreigners. This organisation controlled the majority of Chinese tax revenue in a "trust", and utilised a small portion to bolster the rule of Yuan Shikai, to great effect. The renewed consortium of UK, France, Japan and US in 1920 effectively vetoed all developmental loans to China, ruling over the Chinese government by aiming to control all rails, ports and highways in China.
In the Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907, Britain and Russia partitioned Persia (Iran) into spheres of influence, with the Russians gaining recognition for influence over most of northern Iran, and Britain establishing a zone in the Southeast.
For Siam (Thailand), Britain and France signed an agreement in 1904 whereby the British recognised a French sphere of influence to the east of the River Menam's (Chao Phraya River) basin; in turn, the French recognised British influence over the territory to the west of the Menam basin and west of the Gulf of Thailand. Both parties disclaimed any idea of annexing Siamese territory.
Alexander Hamilton, first U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, aimed for the United States to establish a sphere of influence in North America. Hamilton, writing in the Federalist Papers, harboured ambitions for the U.S. to rise to world power status and gain the strength to expel European powers from the Americas, taking on the mantle of regional dominance among American nations, although most of the New World were European colonies during that period.
This doctrine was formalized under President James Monroe, who asserted that the New World was to be established as a Sphere of influence, removed from European encroachment. This was termed the "Monroe Doctrine". As the U.S. emerged as a world power, few nations dared to trespass on this sphere. A notable exception occurred with the Soviet Union and the Cuban Missile Crisis.
For another example, during the height of its existence in World War II, the Japanese Empire had quite a large sphere of influence. The Japanese government directly governed events in Korea, Vietnam, Taiwan, and parts of Mainland China. The "Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere" could thus be quite easily drawn on a map of the Pacific Ocean as a large "bubble" surrounding the islands of Japan and the Asian and Pacific nations it controlled.
According to a secret protocol attached to the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact of 1939 (revealed only after Germany's defeat in 1945), Northern and Eastern Europe were divided into Nazi and Soviet spheres of influence. In the North, Finland, Estonia, and Latvia were assigned to the Soviet sphere. Poland was to be partitioned in the event of its "political rearrangement"—the areas east of the Narev, Vistula, and San Rivers going to the Soviet Union while Germany would occupy the west. Lithuania, adjacent to East Prussia, would be in the German sphere of influence, although a second secret protocol agreed in September 1939 assigned Lithuania to the USSR. Another clause of the treaty stipulated that Bessarabia, then part of Romania, would join the Moldovan ASSR and become the Moldovan SSR under the control of Moscow. The Soviet invasion of Bukovina on 28 June 1940 violated the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, as it went beyond the Soviet sphere of influence as agreed with the Axis. The USSR continued to deny the existence of the Pact's protocols until after the dissolution of the USSR when the Russian government fully acknowledged the existence and authenticity of the secret protocols.
From 1941 and the German attack on the Soviet Union, the Allied Coalition operated on the unwritten assumption that the Western Powers and the Soviet Union had each its own sphere of influence. The presumption of the US-British and Soviet unrestricted rights in their respective spheres started causing difficulties as the Nazi-controlled territory shrank and the allied powers successively liberated other states. The wartime spheres lacked a practical definition and it had never been determined if a dominant allied power was entitled to unilateral decisions only in the area of military activity, or could also force its will regarding political, social and economic future of other states. This overly informal system backfired during the late stages of the war and afterwards, when it turned out that the Soviets and the Western Allies had very different ideas concerning the administration and future development of the liberated regions and of Germany itself.
During the Cold War, the Baltic states, Central Europe, some countries in Eastern Europe, Cuba, Laos, Vietnam, North Korea, and, until the Sino-Soviet split and Tito-Stalin split, the People's Republic of China and the People's Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, among other countries at various times, were said to lie under the Soviet sphere of influence. Western Europe, Oceania, Japan, and South Korea, among other places, were often said to lie under the sphere of influence of the United States. However, the level of control exerted in these spheres varied and was not absolute. For instance, France and the United Kingdom were able to act independently to invade (with Israel) the Suez Canal (they were later forced to withdraw by joint U.S. and Soviet pressure). Later, France was also able to withdraw from the military arm of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). Cuba often took positions that put it at odds with its Soviet ally, including momentary alliances with the People's Republic of China, economic reorganizations, and providing support for insurgencies in Africa and the Americas without prior approval from the Soviet Union.
With the end of the Cold War, the Eastern Bloc fell apart, effectively ending the Soviet sphere of influence. Then in 1991, the Soviet Union ceased to exist, replaced by the Russian Federation and several other ex-Soviet Republics who became independent states.
After the fall of the Soviet Union, the countries of Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Central Asia that became independent were often portrayed as part of the Russian Federation's "sphere of influence". According to Ulrich Speck, writing for Carnegie Europe, "After the breakup of the Soviet Union, the West's focus was on Russia. Western nations implicitly treated the post-Soviet countries (besides the Baltic states) as Russia's sphere of influence."
In 1997, NATO and Russia signed the Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security, stating the "aim of creating in Europe a common space of security and stability, without dividing lines or spheres of influence limiting the sovereignty of any state."
In 2009, Russia asserted that the European Union desires a sphere of influence and that the Eastern Partnership is "an attempt to extend" it. In March 2009, Sweden's foreign minister Carl Bildt stated that "The Eastern Partnership is not about spheres of influence. The difference is that these countries themselves opted to join".
Following the 2008 Russo-Georgian War, Václav Havel and other former central and eastern European leaders signed an open letter stating that Russia had "violated the core principles of the Helsinki Final Act, the Charter of Paris... -all in the name of defending a sphere of influence on its borders." In April 2014, NATO stated that "Contrary to [the Founding Act], Russia now appears to be attempting to recreate a sphere of influence by seizing a part of Ukraine, maintaining large numbers of forces on its borders, and demanding, as Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov recently stated, that “Ukraine cannot be part of any bloc.”" Criticising Russia in November 2014, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that "old thinking about spheres of influence, which runs roughshod over international law" put the "entire European peace order into question". In January 2017, British Prime Minister Theresa May said, "We should not jeopardise the freedoms that President Reagan and Mrs Thatcher brought to Eastern Europe by accepting President Putin's claim that it is now in his sphere of influence."
In corporate terms, the sphere of influence of a business, organization or group can show its power and influence in the decisions of other businesses/organizations/groups. Influence shows in several ways, such as in size, frequency of visits, etc. In most cases, a company described as "bigger" has a larger sphere of influence.
For example, the software company Microsoft has a large sphere of influence in the market of operating systems; any entity wishing to sell a software product may weigh up compatibility with Microsoft's products as part of a marketing plan.
In another example, retailers wishing to make the most profits must ensure they open their stores in the correct location. This is also true for shopping centers that, to reap the most profits, must be able to attract customers to their vicinity.
There is no defined scale measuring such spheres of influence. However, one can evaluate the spheres of influence of two shopping centers by seeing how far people are prepared to travel to each shopping center, how much time they spend in its vicinity, how often they visit, the order of goods available, etc.
For historical and current examples of significant battles over spheres of influence see:
The Anglo-Persian Agreement was a document involving Great Britain and Persia centered on drilling rights of the Anglo-Persian Oil Company. It was never ratified by the Majlis. This "agreement" was issued by British Foreign Secretary Earl Curzon to the Persian government in August 1919. It stated a guarantee of British access to Iranian oil fields (including five northern provinces formerly under the Russian sphere of influence). In return the British would:
Supply munitions and equipment for a British-trained army
Provide a 2 million sterling loan for "necessary reforms"
Revise the Customs tariff
Survey and build railroads.After the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution the Russians reneged on the Sphere of Influence as 'tsarist Imperialism'. Britain was the remaining power in the region. Lord Curzon hoped to make Iran not a protectorate but a client state of Britain and of no other great power.
The document was denounced worldwide as hegemonic, especially in the United States, which also had designs on accessing Iranian oil fields. Eventually, the Anglo-Persian agreement was formally denounced by the Iranian Parliament (Majlis) on June 22, 1921.Ara Gaya
Ara Gaya, also known as Ana Gaya, Asiryangguk (아시량국, 阿尸良國)), and Alla (안라, 安羅), was a city-state kingdom in the part of Gaya confederacy, in modern-day Haman County of South Korea. As the confrontational foreign policy of Daegaya failed, Ara Gaya and its less confrontational policy gained support in the 540s AD.
By the 6th century AD, Gaya could not risk the hostility of either Baekje or Silla (two of the Three Kingdoms of Korea that dominated the peninsula, the third being Goguryeo). Ara Gaya put a great deal of effort into pursuing a diplomatic solution for maintaining its independence, including hosting summits between Baekje, Silla and Yamato-Wa.
The Gaya confederacy was greatly weakened at the time, as northwestern Gaya states fell under the influence of Baekje and southeastern states fell under Silla's influence. Ara Gaya sought to maintain its independence by allying itself with Goguryeo, and then asked Goguryeo to invade Baekje in 548 AD. This attempt to weaken Baekje's sphere of influence failed when Goguryeo failed to succeed in the campaign.
In 553 AD, Silla defeated Baekje in war and occupied the Gyeonggi area (the Han River basin), breaking its 120-year alliance with Baekje. Silla, having started incorporating the parts of Gaya already under its sphere of influence, also invaded the rest of Gaya to eliminate Baekje's sphere of influence there. Ara Gaya capitulated to Silla in 559 AD.Barnes, New South Wales
Barnes is a small town in the far central south part of the Riverina and situated about 11 kilometres (6.8 mi) north of Moama and 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) north of Echuca.
Because of geography, it is in the sphere of influence of the adjoining state of Victoria, which explains why its railway connection goes to Victoria.
Barnes Post Office opened on 1 January 1928 and closed in 1972.Causes for liberation of French colonies in India
Many interrelated political, cultural, socio-economic and geographical factors contributed to the merger of the French Establishments in India with the Republic of India.Haitian gourde
The gourde (French: [ɡuʁd]) or goud (Haitian Creole: [ɡud]) is the currency of Haiti. Its ISO 4217 code is HTG and it is divided into 100 centimes (French) or santim (Creole).
The word "gourde" is a French cognate for the Spanish term "gordo", from the "pesos gordos" (also known in English as "hard" pieces of eight, and in French as "piastres fortes espagnoles") in which colonial-era contracts within the Spanish sphere of influence were often denominated.Hill sphere
The Hill sphere of an astronomical body is the region in which it dominates the attraction of satellites. The outer shell of that region constitutes a zero-velocity surface. To be retained by a planet, a moon must have an orbit that lies within the planet's Hill sphere. That moon would, in turn, have a Hill sphere of its own. Any object within that distance would tend to become a satellite of the moon, rather than of the planet itself. One simple view of the extent of the Solar System is the Hill sphere of the Sun with respect to local stars and the galactic nucleus.In more precise terms, the Hill sphere approximates the gravitational sphere of influence of a smaller body in the face of perturbations from a more massive body. It was defined by the American astronomer George William Hill, based on the work of the French astronomer Édouard Roche. For this reason, it is also known as the Roche sphere (not to be confused with the Roche limit or Roche Lobe).
In the example to the right, Earth's Hill sphere extends between the Lagrangian points L1 and L2, which lie along the line of centers of the two bodies. The region of influence of the second body is shortest in that direction, and so it acts as the limiting factor for the size of the Hill sphere. Beyond that distance, a third object in orbit around the second (e.g. the Moon) would spend at least part of its orbit outside the Hill sphere, and would be progressively perturbed by the tidal forces of the central body (e.g. the Sun), eventually ending up orbiting the latter.Home Gardens, California
Home Gardens is a census-designated place (CDP) in Riverside County, California, United States and It is within the City of Corona's sphere of influence. The population was 11,570 at the 2010 census, up from 9,461 at the 2000 census.Islands of Africa
The islands of Africa are a major geographical sub-region of Africa, and represent a distinct demographic and historical cultural sphere of influence on the continent.List of East Asian leaders in the Japanese sphere of influence (1931–1945)
This is a list of some Asian leaders and politicians, with a commitment to the Japanese cause, in the Yen Block or Greater Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere Pan-Asian economic associations previous to and during the Pacific War period, between 1931–1945.Nobunaga's Ambition
Nobunaga's Ambition (信長の野望, Nobunaga no Yabō) is a series of turn-based grand strategy role-playing simulation video games. The original game was one of the first in its genre, being released in March 1983 by the Japanese video game developer Koei. Nobunaga's Ambition takes place during the Sengoku period of feudal Japan. The player is tasked with achieving the ultimate goal of warlord Oda Nobunaga: the conquest and unification of Japan. Selecting Oda Nobunaga is optional, however, as the player is also able to choose from a variety of other regional daimyōs of the time.
Games in the franchise have been released for the Nintendo Entertainment System, Game Boy, Mega Drive, 3DO, Super NES, PlayStation, Sega Saturn, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch. The title was also released for Macintosh as well as MSX, Amiga, and MS-DOS. As of March 2018, the series has shipped more than 10 million copies worldwide.Rabat, Iran
Rabat (Persian: ربط, also Romanized as Rabaṭ) is a city in the north east of Sardasht County, West Azerbaijan Province, in road of sardast - mahabad Kurdistan of Iran. In 2015 , its population was 19,350, in 2,901 families.Peoples of rabat are Kurds that speak by Mokryan accent
Rabat city has hostorical and ancient from Medes traces in Musasir temple .The major known ancient civilization in the region was that of Mannaeans, a buffer state between Urartian and Assyrian sphere of influence . Matiene was the name of a kingdom in northwestern Iran on the lands of the earlier kingdom of the Mannae. .Russian Aircraft Corporation MiG
Russian Aircraft Corporation "MiG" (Russian: Российская самолетостроительная корпорация „МиГ“, translit. Rossiyskaya samoletostroitel'naya korporatsiya "MiG") is a Soviet, and later a Russian aerospace joint stock company. Its head office is in Begovoy District, Northern Administrative Okrug, Moscow. The name "MiG" is formed as a conjunction of the names of its two founding designers, Artem Mikoyan and
MiG aircraft are a staple of the Soviet and Russian Air Forces, and the Soviet Union sold many of these aircraft within its sphere of influence. They have been used by the militaries of North Korea, North Vietnam, India and also in aerial confrontations with American and allied forces, and form part of the air forces of many Arab nations.
It was formerly known as Mikoyan and Gurevich Design Bureau (Russian: Микоя́н и Гуре́вич, МиГ Mikoyan i Gurevich, MiG), then simply Mikoyan.Saint-Isidore, New Brunswick
Saint-Isidore (2006 pop.: 796) is a village in Gloucester County, New Brunswick, Canada. It is bordered by the communities of Pont-Landry, Hacheyville, Bois-Gagnon and Tilley Road. The community is situated on the Acadian Peninsula. The current mayor is Oscar Roussel.
Saint-Isidore belongs the town of Tracadie-Sheila's sphere of influence. With the population being Acadian, almost all of its inhabitants speak French as a mother tongue and are of the Catholic religion. The local school name is École la Relève and offers kindergarten programs until the 7th grade.
The main industries are agriculture, asphalt and services. The village maintains a local museum, a public pool and a few parks around the municipality. It is crossed by provincial Route 160 and Route 135.San Antonio Valley, California
The community of San Antonio Valley, also called San Antonio or San Antone, is located along the Diablo Range in eastern Santa Clara County, California. The locale is bordered by Alameda County to the north and Stanislaus County to the east. The sparsely populated area is located at the junction of San Antonio Valley Road, Mines Road, and Del Puerto Canyon Road. The area includes the San Antonio Valley Ecological Reserve, a 3,282 acre nature preserve created by a Nature Conservancy purchase of land from local rancher, Keith Hurner, and known for its herd of tule elk.Soviet Empire
The informal term "Soviet Empire" has two meanings. In the narrow sense, it expresses a view in Western Sovietology that the Soviet Union as a state was a colonial empire. The onset of this interpretation is traditionally attributed to Richard Pipes's book The Formation of the Soviet Union (1954). In the wider sense, it refers to the country's perceived imperialist foreign policy during the Cold War. The nations said to be part of the Soviet Empire (in the wider sense) were officially independent countries with separate governments that set their own policies, but those policies had to remain within certain limits decided by the Soviet Union and enforced by threat of intervention by the Warsaw Pact (Hungary 1956, Czechoslovakia 1968 and Poland 1980). Countries in this situation are often called satellite states.Sovietization
Sovietization (Russian: Советизация) is the adoption of a political system based on the model of soviets (workers' councils) or the adoption of a way of life and mentality modelled after the Soviet Union.
A notable wave of Sovietization (in the second meaning) occurred in Mongolia and later during and after World War II in Central Europe (Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland etc.). In a broad sense, this included (voluntary and involuntary) adoption of Soviet-like institutions, laws, customs, traditions and the Soviet way of life, both on a national level and in smaller communities. This was usually promoted and sped up by propaganda aimed at creating a common way of life in all states within the Soviet sphere of influence. In many cases, Sovietization was also accompanied by forced resettlement of large categories of "class enemies" (kulaks, or osadniks, for instance) to the Gulag labor camps and exile settlements.In a narrow sense, the term Sovietization is often applied to mental and social changes within the population of the Soviet Union and its satellites which led to creation of the new Soviet man (according to its supporters) or Homo Sovieticus (according to its critics).Sphere of influence (astrodynamics)
A sphere of influence (SOI) in astrodynamics and astronomy is the oblate-spheroid-shaped region around a celestial body where the primary gravitational influence on an orbiting object is that body. This is usually used to describe the areas in the Solar System where planets dominate the orbits of surrounding objects such as moons, despite the presence of the much more massive but distant Sun. In the patched conic approximation, used in estimating the trajectories of bodies moving between the neighbourhoods of different masses using a two body approximation, ellipses and hyperbolae, the SOI is taken as the boundary where the trajectory switches which mass field it is influenced by.
The general equation describing the radius of the sphere of a planet:
In the patched conic approximation, once an object leaves the planet's SOI, the primary/only gravitational influence is the Sun (until the object enters another body's SOI). Because the definition of rSOI relies on the presence of the Sun and a planet, the term is only applicable in a three-body or greater system and requires the mass of the primary body to be much greater than the mass of the secondary body. This changes the three-body problem into a restricted two-body problem.Sphere of influence (black hole)
The sphere of influence is a region around a supermassive black hole in which the gravitational potential of the black hole dominates the gravitational potential of the host galaxy. The radius of the sphere of influence is called the "(gravitational) influence radius".
There are two definitions in common use for the radius of the sphere of influence. The first is given by
where MBH is the mass of the black hole, σ is the stellar velocity dispersion of the host bulge, and G is the gravitational constant.
The second definition is the radius at which the enclosed mass in stars equals twice MBH, i.e.
Which definition is most appropriate depends on the physical question that is being addressed. The first definition takes into account the bulge's overall effect on the motion of a star, since is determined in part by stars that have moved far from the black hole. The second definition compares the force from the black hole to the local force from the stars.
It is a minimum requirement that the sphere of influence be well resolved in order that the mass of the black hole be determined dynamically.Treaty of the Pruth
The Treaty of the Pruth was signed on the banks of the river Pruth between the Ottoman Empire and the Tsardom of Russia on 21 July 1711, ending the Russo-Turkish War of 1710–1711. The treaty was a political victory for the Ottoman Empire.The Treaty stipulated the return of Azov to the Ottomans, Taganrog and several Russian fortresses were to be demolished, and the Tsar pledged to stop interfering in the affairs of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth which the Russians increasingly saw as under their sphere of influence.