A Theory of Global Governance: Authority, Legitimacy, and Contestation

ISBN : 9780198819981

Michael Zurn
336 Pages
156 x 234 mm
Pub date
Mar 2018
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This book offers a major new theory of global governance, explaining both its rise and what many see as its current crisis. The author suggests that world politics is now embedded in a normative and institutional structure dominated by hierarchies and power inequalities and therefore inherently creates contestation, resistance, and distributional struggles. Within an ambitious and systematic new conceptual framework, the theory makes four key contributions. Firstly, it reconstructs global governance as a political system which builds on normative principles and reflexive authorities. Second, it identifies the central legitimation problems of the global governance system with a constitutionalist setting in mind. Third, it explains the rise of state and societal contestation by identifying key endogenous dynamics and probing the causal mechanisms that produced them. Finally, it identifies the conditions under which struggles in the global governance system lead to d


Introduction: Global Governance in Hard Times; Introduction; Part I: The Global Governance System; 1 Normative Principles; 2 Reflexive Authorities; 3 Legitimation Problems; 4 The Theoretical Model: Causal Mechanisms and Hypotheses; Part II: The Contestation of Global Governance; 5 The Rise of the Global Governance System: A Historical-Institutionalist Account; 6 The Politicization of Authority beyond the Nation State; 7 Counter-Institutionalization in the Global Governance System; 8 The Deepening of Global Governance; Part III: Are There Realistic Models of Global Governance with Cosmopolitan Intent? An Empirical Assessment; 10 Conclusion: A New Paradigm in IR?

About the author: 

Michael Zurn is Director of the Global Governance unit at the Berlin Social Science Center (WZB) and Professor of International Relations at the Free University of Berlin since 2004. He was founding Dean of the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin (2004-2009). He is a member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Science and the Academy of Europe. He is author of numerous monographs and anthologies, and has published various articles in International Organization, World Politics, International Studies Quarterly, Global Policy, International Theory, Journal of Common Market Studies, West European Politics, Politics, Politische Vierteljahresschrift, Zeitschrift fur Internationale Beziehungen, and Leviathan, among others.

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