عنوان مقاله [English]
نویسندگان [English]چکیده [English]
Following collapse of the Soviet Union, regional integration has been regarded as one of the requirements that need to be met by various regions wishing to be a part of globalization process. The ECO region, particularly countries in Central Asia and the Caucasus are not an exception. Nevertheless, this region has been faced with some integration challenges. Employing an analytical-descriptive approach, this article attempts to study the role played by political-regional elites in taking opportunities and responding to the ECO challenges, as one of the most influential factors that has affected actions of regional players. Taking into account “decision-making theory”, the article analyses the role of political elites in regional integration. The main question of the article is “what role is played by regional-political elites in regional integration process within the ECO?” The article hypothesizes that in light of political structure of studied countries, the elites have had a significant role in the ECO decision-making process. In fact, positive perspective of elites on the ECO has had a great impact on convergence among members and the ECO’s success.