Seizing the middle ground: Cosmopolitan Democracy, its critique and possible steps forward for global governance

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GR:EEN Working Paper Series
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Cosmopolitan democracy proposals for the reform of the system of global governance have become a highly debated issue. Cosmopolitan democracy scholars base their fundamental assumptions on the progressive shifts and challenges that have taken place in the last decades, namely (a) the failure of the nation-state to stand up to an increasing number of transnational threats that transcend national barriers and borders, (b) the liberalization of the global economy and the increasing leverage, political and economic, of powerful private economic institutions, and (c) the understanding that more and more people feel they belong to a single humanity with one common fate, rather than to specific closed national communities. These developments have led to an existing global governance system that endeavors to regulate mounting global threats and challenges. A number of gaps, however, remain, rendering global governance in its current form rather inadequate and asymmetrical.
Moreover, as the emphasis progressively is diverted from state to human security (Buzan and Weaver, 2003), analysts focus not only upon the functions and interests of states, but also on the welfare and rights of people regardless of their citizenship.