The legitimacy of global institutions which address security challenges is in question. The manner in which they make decisions and the interests they reflect often falls short of twenty-first century expectations and norms of good governance. Also, their performance has raised doubts about their ability to address contemporary challenges such as civil wars, weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, and the use of military force in international politics.
Addressing topical issues, such as the war against Iraq in 2003 and terrorism, and presenting provocative arguments, A Crisis of Global Institutions? explores the sources of the challenge to multilateralism – including US pre-eminence, the changing nature of international security, and normative concerns about the way decisions are taken in international organizations. Edward Newman argues that whilst some such challenges are a sign of ‘crisis’, many others are representative of ‘normality’ and continuity in international relations. Nevertheless, it is essential to consider how multilateralism might be more viably constituted to cope with contemporary and future demands.
Table of Contents
Introduction 1. Sources and Manifestations of Multilateral Malaise 2. The US, Power, and Multilateralism 3. Collective Security and the Use of Force 4. Humanitarian Intervention 5. Weapons of Mass Destruction 6. Civil War, State Failure and Peacebuilding 7. Terrorism 8. Conclusion: Revisiting Institutionalism in a Post-Westphalian World
Edward Newman is Director of Studies on Conflict and Security in the Peace and Governance Programme of the United Nations University.