The European Union in the G8: Promoting Consensus and Concerted Actions for Global Public Goods

The European Union in the G8: Promoting Consensus and Concerted Actions for Global Public Goods

The European Union in the G8: Promoting Consensus and Concerted Actions for Global Public Goods

The European Union in the G8: Promoting Consensus and Concerted Actions for Global Public Goods

Synopsis

An eminent international line up of experts in law, political science, economics and history examine the dynamics of the European Union's (EU) development as a collective member of the G8 and G20. Each contribution provides a methodical and much needed insight into the external and internal factors influencing this evolvement process, the options for these institutions to reform and collaborate and the future role of the EU in this new system of institutions. Part One makes an introduction into the topic of the EU representation in the G8 and the main concepts explored in the book. Part Two presents an analytical framework for exploring the EU actorness in global governance institutions. Part Three examines the transformation of the G7/G8 system, the emergence of the G20 as a leader's forum and the EU role in the process. Part Four provides an in-depth analysis of the EU contribution to critical cases of global governance including issues of energy, finance, development, peace and security. Part Five analyses the main trends in leadership and models of engagement. Contributing to key contemporary debates, this book is a lucid replenishment to the existing literature on global governance and an excellent resource to studying the EU's role as a global actor.

Excerpt

This book explores the role of the European Union in global governance with a focus on its evolving role in the Group of Eight since 2000. This evolution reflects the EU’s growth in power and influence as well as its expanding competences and legal authority. This volume also analyses the EU’s participation in the Group of Twenty, of which it has been a member since the group’s finance ministers and central bank governors began meeting in 1999 – unlike the EU’s gradual inclusion in G8 processes. The book traces the transformation of the EU’s identity into a global actor, examining both how its participation in these institutions of global governance affects the EU and how the EU contributes to global governance as both an actor and a model.

Numerous definitions, many contested, of global governance reflect the complexity of this relationship. Governance involves ‘setting goals and making decisions for an entire collectivity, including individuals or groups who have not explicitly agreed to them. It also involves a rather high level of intervention which may stabilize or alter a given status quo’ (Jachtenfuchs and Kohler-Koch 2004). Global governance can be defined as ‘rule making and power exercise at a global scale, but not necessarily by entities authorized by general agreement to act’, steering the international order towards particular outcomes and values (Keohane 2003, 132).

Jan Aart Scholte (2011) highlights the planetary scope of the concept, identifying global governance as ‘a complex of rules and regulatory institutions that apply to transplanetary jurisdictions and constituencies’. Global governance is exercised by states, formal and informal intergovernmental organizations, transnational networks, business corporations and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). What emerges, according to Philippe Schmitter (2004), is multilevel governance that ‘engages a multiplicity of politically independent, but otherwise interdependent actors – private and public – at different levels of territorial aggregation in more-or-less continuous negotiation/deliberation/implementation, and that does not assign exclusive policy compétence or assert a stable hierarchy of political authority to any of these levels’. Although this definition stresses the layered nature of EU governance, it captures the contemporary global governance . . .

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