Beyond a Seat at the Table: Participation and Influence in Global Governance

Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, Working Paper No. 211 – March 2019

20 Pages Posted: 4 Jun 2019

See all articles by Henrique Choer Moraes

Henrique Choer Moraes

Embassy of Brazil in New Zealand ; KU Leuven

Date Written: May 16, 2019

Abstract

Debates on the legitimacy of global governance pay remarkably little attention to whether and how developing countries can influence global governance. Instead, the focus lies significantly on addressing legitimacy challenges such as access and exclusion in global governance. To be sure, increasing participation in global governance is a goal worth pursuing. But these debates by and large stop short of addressing a crucial question: how can weak states harness increased participation in global governance if they are ill-equipped to do so? In order to respond to this question, the present article lays down a framework of mechanisms that might induce more influence by developing countries. The article makes two claims. First, we should look beyond participation in or access to global governance and focus also on enabling influence by developing countries. Influence is the combination of two skills that need to be understood if we want to foster effective participation by developing countries: translation of global governance (understood as the ability to make sense of global discussions and to devise political reactions thereto) and empowerment to defend the interests of a country at global decision-making processes. Second, increased influence by developing countries results not only from top-down measures or reforms adopted by global governance institutions, which is the predominant approach today. Rather, influence can also result from fostering domestic capacities (actor-level mechanisms of influence) or by leveraging resources available at the international system, such as by forming coalitions or by collaborating with non-governmental organizations (system-level mechanisms). The framework thus proposed is a matrix that combines translation and empowerment at the actorand system-levels, a framing that might contribute to advance policy and scholarly discussions on influence by developing countries.

Keywords: global governance, negotiations, developing countries

Suggested Citation

Choer Moraes, Henrique, Beyond a Seat at the Table: Participation and Influence in Global Governance (May 16, 2019). Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, Working Paper No. 211 – March 2019 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3389168 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3389168

Henrique Choer Moraes (Contact Author)

Embassy of Brazil in New Zealand ( email )

Level 13, 10 Customhouse Quay
Wellington, 6011
New Zealand

KU Leuven ( email )

Belgium

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
25
Abstract Views
210
PlumX Metrics