Divided Nations: Why global governance is failing, and what we can do about it

Overview

With rapid globalization, the world is more deeply interconnected than ever before. While this has its advantages, it also brings with it systemic risks that are only just being identified and understood. Rapid urbanization, together with technological leaps, such as the Internet, mean that we are now physically and virtually closer than ever in humanity's history.

We face a number of international challenges - climate change, pandemics, cyber security, and migration - which ...

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Overview

With rapid globalization, the world is more deeply interconnected than ever before. While this has its advantages, it also brings with it systemic risks that are only just being identified and understood. Rapid urbanization, together with technological leaps, such as the Internet, mean that we are now physically and virtually closer than ever in humanity's history.

We face a number of international challenges - climate change, pandemics, cyber security, and migration - which spill over national boundaries. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the UN, the IMF, the World Bank - bodies created in a very different world, more than 60 years ago - are inadequate for the task of managing such risk in the 21st century.

Ian Goldin explores whether the answer is to reform the existing structures, or to consider a new and radical approach. By setting out the nature of the problems and the various approaches to global governance, Goldin highlights the challenges that we are to overcome and considers a road map for the future.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Reports from central banks and intergovernmental organizations are known for being high-minded but stultifying, conveying a carefully calibrated consensus. Goldin (Globalization for Development: Meeting New Challenges), former vice-president of the World Bank and current director of Oxford University’s Oxford Martin School, has imbibed deeply of this ethos, and his latest book seems designed to solidify his reputation while ruffling few feathers. Mercifully brief, Goldin’s book begins with the premise that “our capacity to manage global issues has not kept pace with the growth in their complexity and danger” and focuses on five critical areas—including climate change, migration, and finance—where global governance and multilateral institutions must be strengthened. Goldin says nothing that is truly controversial or objectionable, and includes little that will catch readers’ attention, whether in the way of human interest or deep analysis. Cheap bromides abound. About the earthquake in Haiti, Goldin declares that “connectivity... allows us to react quickly and decisively in the face of natural disasters,” while the proliferation of grassroots campaigns via social media prompts the assertion that “the capacity of soft people-power to translate aspirations into sustained actions should not be overestimated.” Like the preamble to a U.N. resolution, the book signals that the issues have been considered from all perspectives, and studiously avoids mentioning anything that might induce the raising of eyebrows. (June)
Library Journal
A quick scan of the international news is enough to convince anyone of Goldin's (globalization & development, Univ. of Oxford, UK; former vice president, World Bank; Exceptional People) claims that our current institutions of global governance are out of date. He maintains that the UN, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank are unable to deal effectively with many of the most pressing global issues. Goldin argues that in our "hyper-connected age," events that would have once triggered a localized emergency now can create a global crisis. Chief among the challenging phenomena are climate change, migration, the possibility of global pandemics, continued financial troubles, and cybersecurity threats. Given his previous connection to the World Bank, the author is well aware that issues of state sovereignty and short-term pain for long-term gain are complicating factors for any organization attempting to tackle these issues. Yet he believes that just as the UN developed after World War II to solve the pressing issues of the day, so too will our political institutions evolve or new governance structures emerge to meet ongoing challenges. VERDICT Goldin's concise analysis of his subject makes this an important read for anyone with a serious interest in global well-being.—Veronic Arellano, St. Mary's Coll. of Maryland Lib., St. Mary's City
From the Publisher
"Goldin brings a wealth of experience as a practitioner with a variety of international organizations along with solid academic credentials to this thoughtful and clearly written study of global governance... this thoughtful, well-informed work provides very helpful guidance through the crowded terrain of global governance issues today... Highly recommended." —CHOICE
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199693900
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 3/22/2013
  • Pages: 200
  • Sales rank: 798,070
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Ian Goldin, Professor, Director of the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford

Professor Ian Goldin is the Director of the Oxford University's Oxford Martin School, Oxford University Professor of Globalisation and Development and Professorial Fellow at Balliol College, Oxford. From 2001 to 2006 he was at the World Bank, first as Director of Policy and then as Vice President. He has published over fifty articles and fifteen books, including iGlobalisation for Development: Meeting New Challengesr (OUP, 2012) and iExceptional People: How Migration Shaped our World and Will Define our Futurer (PUP, 2011).

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Table of Contents

List of acronyms and abbreviations
1. New Global Governance Challenges
2. Reconciling global, national, and local interests
3. Rethinking Reform: nations, networks and knowledge
4. The Power of One: The role of individuals
5. What can be done?
Bibliography

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