POLB80 Lecture 9: November 6 2012.
Collective World Politics
States will sign treaties on everything. There is a number of Multilateral Treaties Signed
to deal with big issues with politics. States also make small unimportant treaties like
cheese treaty in addition to trying to solve the larger problems. Treaties a peaceful
interaction on big and small issues. Making treaties seems to be a normal part of world
The Chart shows the number of IGOs, NGOs, it’s similar to the number of treaties signed
over time. Overtime number of organizations increases.
We get a rise in cooperative behaviour.
If issues are conflictual and competitive, it’s non-violent.
Politics is an order set of dynamics.
Why is there a growth on interaction? States cannot deal with their issues by
themselves and issues do cross borders so they use multilateral treaties. There’s
a lot more constraints on world politics.
Tension that dominates world politics is between sovereignty and common concerns.
The tensions that we see are global economics, security, and etc. States protect their
sovereignty and have common concern that they want to deal with. This shapes the
collective politics on how they organize their tension.
Types of Order: (Chapter 17) 4 kinds of world order:
Deep Constitutional Ideas- if principles were changed, all of politics would be
changed (Ex. Sovereignty is a deep constitutional idea and without it we
wouldn’t have anarchy and a global territory split up.)
Fundamental Institutions- are the basic rules of interaction in the system. How
are you going to deal with the fact that there are common concerns? How are
they going to deal with each other? How these independent autonomous units
are interacting with each other? By:
1. Diplomacy-(Ex. embassies are extensions of national territories)
Diplomats are immune and not subject to the people of their own state.
Diplomats- “a person appointed by a national government to
conduct official negotiations and maintain political, economic and
social relations in another country of countries.” Dictionary.com
2. Multilateral system and international law- this allows states to interact
with each other.
Issues Specific Regimes: How do we create rules to deal with specific issues? Global/Transnational Actors: Help states to deal with common concerns. The
whole ego system other than states that are participation and shape what the
These are the types of order of how we deal with sovereignty vs. common concerns.
International law- They are binding rules that state follow. Does it matter? Is it based on
1 . Consent, trust, and power. Can consent be an appropriate foundation for
law? Because the entities are sovereign and there is no authority above them,
the only way you can be bound to a law is to consent to them.
2 Most states comply with international law most of the time.
3 US complies most of the time. When they sign the treaty, it tends to comply
with that treaty. They don’t sign all the time. For example, the US never signed
the international criminal court treaty (ICC). Also they unsigned the Kyoto
They justify apparent transgressions not just the US, mostly all
states. When states don’t comply, they justify.
States sign treaties because there are benefits in doing so.
Trust and power are the keys to making international laws and forcing international
Powerful actors will have a bigger role in what the rules look like. Powerful
actors can change all the time.
Trust is a foundation cause if you don’t comply with the system, the system will
go down and you will lose benefits of interactions.
Enforcement: It’s a sticky issue. We’re all subject to domestic law and there’s a
government that enforces our laws. Because of Sovereignty, enforcement becomes an
issue. Types of enforcements:
There are soft enforcement- shaming them
Actual enforcement through UN Security Council. Technically, the UN Security
Council can force international law when the state agrees to the law and that the
state is violating the international law.
This starts to change the idea of consent. Some international laws
are starting to build an idea that sovereignty is conditional
(sovereign to a certain point). Sovereignty can be a shield to
ignore international laws) Ex. Sanctions.
International Law itself: