The Case for Non-Sovereignty
Lessons from Sub-National Island Jurisdictions
Territories like American Samoa, Anguilla, Aruba, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cook Islands and the Faroes are sub-national island jurisdictions (SNIJs). They all share some measure of autonomous government, and are easily construed as independent states-in-waiting. Yet, most of these territories exhibit no urgency to become independent. Instead, they appear to have decided that there are political and economic benefits accruing today when island territories are autonomous but not sovereign. In an uncertain world, a substantial degree of autonomy, respect and protection for local culture and identity, reasonable provision of employment opportunities, welfare and security by a larger and benign metropolitan state, have collectively weakened most local thrusts for independence. In spite of the mandate of the United Nations Committee on Decolonisation, there is a strong case to be made today for non-sovereignty, and it is the SNIJs that provide clear evidence.
Table of Contents
1. Exploring Sub-National Island Jurisdictions Godfrey Baldacchino and David Milne
2. Island Jurisdictions in Comparative Constitutional Perspective Ronald L. Watts
3. The Advantages of Political Affiliation: Dependent & Independent Small Island Profiles Jerome L. McElroy and Kara B. Pearce
4. In or Out: Sub-National Island Jurisdictions and the Antechamber of Paradiplomacy Barry Bartmann
5. Island Disaster Paradiplomacy in the Commonwealth Ilan Kelman, Megan Davies, Tom Mitchell, Iain Orr and Bob Conrich
6. Isolation as disability and resource: considering sub-national island status in the constitution of the ‘New Tasmania’ Elaine Stratford
7. Unitary State, Devolution, Autonomy, Secession: State Building and Nation Building in Bougainville, Papua New Guinea Yash P Ghai and Anthony J. Regan
8. Dependence and Autonomy in Sub-National Island Jurisdictions: The Case of the Kingdom of the Netherlands Gert Oostindie
9. The Rise and Fall of Sub-National Island Jurisdictions: The Cases of San Andrés y Providencia and the Galápagos Islands Sandy Kerr
10. ‘We are not ready’: Colonialism or Autonomy in Tokelau John Connell
Godfrey Baldacchino is an international authority on Island Studies, and the second Canada Research Chair at University of Prince Edward Island, Canada.