POLI 360 - Lecture (Apr. 3rd)

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13 Apr 2012
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What are Institutions?
Focus of Scholarly Study and Debate Post WWII and Post-Cold War
Problems of Conceptual Clarity – Conflation fo Terms
Duffields definition:
relatively stable sets of related constitutive, regulative, and procedural norms and
rules that pertain to the international system, the actors in the system (including
states as well as nonstate entities) and their activities.
Institutions as Rules (Rationalist) – formal, codified, interest driven (UN Charter)
Institutions as Norms (Constructivist) – formal or informal, ideational, social,
normative (HR)
Institutions as Combinations of rule-like (formal) and norm-like (intersubjective)
Thus, institutions are social phenomenon, not primarily interest driven but norm-
What do Institutions Do?
1) Regulative
Prescribe, Proscribe, set standards for behaviour (non-use of force, non-use of
WMDs, tells states what they can or cannot do.)
2) Procedural
How states interact with each other in the institution and outside (decision making,
dispute resolution procedures, etc.)
3) Constitutive
Focus of constructivists: creation of social actors (UN, IMF), shaping and changing
identities and interests
Conclusion: Varied Phenomenon can be formal or informal; rule based or norm
based; interest driven or norm driven; and serve a mix of functions which can e
constitutive, regulative or procedural.
International Organizations
Functionalist Theory/Interdependence (Keohane and Nye)
1) Reduce Transaction Costs
2) Deal with Collective Action Problems
3) Information Collection and Dissemination
4) Issue Linkages
5) Deters Cheating and Encourages Reciprocity
The United Nations and International Security
1) Collective Security Principle (Chap 7, Articles 41 and 42)
2) Conditions for its functioning
1. Powerful coalition
2. Same concept of security
3. Common Good – set aside conflicting political interests
3) Problems of Collective Security
1. hard to prove who attacked first
2. Alliance compulsions and selfish interests
International Regimes
Krasner: “sets of implicit or explicit principles, norms, rules, and deciion making
procedures around which actors' expectations converge in a given area of IR.”
can be formal or informal, can e actors or not (non-prolif/IAEA)
much rare in the security arena (NPT, chem. weapons, MTCR)
Why security regimes are difficult: (Jervis)
1) Fear- Anarchy
2) More at stake
3) Uncertainty and Technology
4) Difficult ocnditions to be met
1. Great Power cooperation
2. Status quoism
3. Normative Agreement
4. War seen as costly