EGG Essays

EGG Essays

European War and Global Pandemic: The Renewed Validity of Active Non-Alignment

Carlos Fortin, Jorge Heine, and Carlos Ominami

What explains the apparently counterintuitive preference for non-alignment expressed by some Latin American countries in response the Ukraine conflict?  What new trends and key patterns can be observed in terms of the foreign policy and diplomatic positioning of these countries in the Global South, and what are the implications for international governance?


New Development Bank and Civil Society Engagement

Suresh Nanwani

This essay offers a preliminary discussion of the New Development Bank’s engagement of civil society and represents an initial attempt to examine how the Bank has engaged CSOs over the past seven years, since it commenced business.  It offers a comparative lens, by examining the modes which the more established MDBs have devised to engage CSOs, and the analysis draws largely on NGO reporting on the NDB’s engagement of civil society. The conclusion explores potential options for the Bank to strengthen its engagement with civil society organizations, as one way to help achieve its objectives.


China’s Evolving “Operating System” for Environmental Non-State Actors and the Challenges of Meeting 21st Century Needs for Governance

Dan Guttman, Yijia Jing, and Oran R. Young

The challenges of addressing climate change and the spread of infectious diseases highlight the inadequacy of mainstream twentieth century global governance systems featuring international legally binding instruments and intergovernmental organizations to meet twenty-first century needs for governance. One alternative that has garnered increased attention in recent years features roles for a variety of non-state actors in encouraging action by governments or even providing substitutes for governmental initiatives. The dramatic growth in China’s global role raises the obvious question:  how does western thinking about non-state actors map onto the Chinese experience?


Latin America Between a Rock and a Hard Place: A Second Cold War and the Active Non-Alignment Option

Carlos Fortín, Jorge Heine and Carlos Ominami

Although it may last a couple of years, this pandemic will eventually pass. What will not pass is the helplessness of a fragmented Latin America that finds itself in its weakest position in many decades. Far from reducing international tensions, the pandemic has exacerbated geopolitical rivalry.  It has also given a strong boost to a Second Cold War, this time between the United States and China. While US authorities talked about the "Chinese virus,"   and the "Wuhan virus," a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson suggested that the virus might have been generated by the United States.   Washington has expelled numerous Chinese journalists from the United States, an action Beijing has reciprocated. Several bills have been introduced in the United States Senate to restrict trade, investment and scientific research and student flows with China. What will the impact of a Second Cold War be on Latin America?


The Promises and Challenges of Digitalization and Development in Major Emerging Markets

Laura C. Mahrenbach

Observers have noted we are now in the midst of a “Fourth Industrial Revolution” whereby new digital technologies and big data both offer the potential to address longstanding developmental challenges and simultaneously raise questions about traditional modes of governance and production. This new pattern of change is especially relevant for emerging and developing economies. How can data and digitalization provide new approaches to stubborn development problems? What challenges do governments face in pursuing such efforts? And what are the global governance dimensions within these processes?


The Future of International Development Finance

Pieter Bottelier

The system of Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) as it has developed since the Bretton Woods conference of 1944 has performed better than is usually recognized. Partly because of the Bretton Woods institutions and the activities of regional MDBs that have emerged since the late 1950s, global inequality as measured by national average p.c. income across countries, has declined for the last four to five decades. However, in recent years the trend toward convergence has stalled or reversed for the poorest countries, probably including India. Despite some earlier convergence of p.c. incomes, poverty, underdevelopment and excessive inequality remain serious problems in today’s world. This EGG Essay explores the roles international development finance can play in addressing it.


New Pacific Alliances: Transforming Transpacific Relations

Jorge Heine and Nicolás Albertoni

At a time when protectionism and isolationism are raising their ugly heads, the TPP11 conveyed a potent signal. In fact, the agreement was signed on the very day that U.S. President Donald Trump announced the imposition of U.S. tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum.  Eleven countries from three continents (Asia, Australasia and Latin America), both developed (Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and Singapore) and developing (Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico and Peru), capitalist and socialist (Vietnam), banded together in the cause of liberalized commerce, globalization and a rules-based international trading order. These diverse nations are pushing for a more open trans-Pacific trading system at a time when the geo-economic axis is shifting from the North Atlantic to the Asia-Pacific, and the North Atlantic powers themselves are turning inward, under the spell of nativist and populist currents.  It is not farfetched to suggest that new Pacific alliances are emerging.


What is Next? …for World Order and Global Governance

Gregory T. Chin and Carla P. Freeman

In the scholarly world, the most influential scholarship in International Relations, International Organization and International Political Economy has largely reflected the proposition that “exogenous conditions” can be assumed to be stable and largely unchanging, and the chief intellectual goal has been mapping how the actors in the system would adapt to, and internalize, the established norms and rules. There was really no need to debate fundamentals or first principles. Or so it was thought. But as the world has entered a period of dynamic change, it is increasingly apparent that another perspective is required – one that can grapple seriously with both change and continuity.