Beyond Anarchy: Rule and Authority in the International System

Lecture Series of the Cluster of Excellence



The normative order of the international system is often described as anarchical, denoting a system in which an overarching authority is missing that could dissolve conflicts between the main actors in this system, traditionally perceived to be nation-states. While the latter assumption has been relaxed during the last decades with the rise of non-state actors on the one hand and inter- and supranational organizations on the other, debates still cling to the notion of anarchy. Even if developments such as supranational decision-making in international organizations, informal decisionmaking in clubs or private transnational bodies undermine the classical understanding of anarchy, they are often portrayed as a (retractable) delegation of authority by states, but not as an element of rule in the international system. By contrast, international legal scholars think of the international system as an order governed by legal rules which, since the 19th century, is characterized by an increasing degree of “centralization” (Hans Kelsen) within the United Nations, a move from a management of coexistence to a spirit of co-operation, a proliferation of international organizations and growing influence of constitutional norms. Accordingly, the paradigm is not power, but law.
The lecture series covers the tension between these two perspectives and raises an issue that concerns both: What does authority and rule mean internationally? While some hold the position that authority is dependent on legitimacy, others would suggest that legitimacy is rather an  accompanying feature of authority or even prefer the term rule, pointing to the existence of opposition and dissidence in the international system.
In order to arrive at a thorough understanding of the changing normative order of international politics, distinguished speakers from different disciplinary (political science, law, sociology) and theoretical backgrounds are invited to discuss.

Goethe-University Frankfurt am Main, Campus Westend
Hörsaalzentrum

Presented by:
Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"

Programme (pdf): click here...

Wednesday, 16 October 2013, 6.15pm
Prof. Robert O. Keohane (Princeton University)
New Modes of Pluralist Global Governance
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 23 October 2013, 6.15pm
Prof. Nikita Dhawan (Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders")
The Politics of the Governed: Alter-Globalization and Subalternity
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 30. Oktober 2013, 6.15pm
Prof. Nico Krisch, Catalan Institute of Advanced Studies (ICREA)/Barcelona Institute of International Studies (IBEI)
Liquid Authority: Law, Institutions and Legitimacy in Global Governance
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 20 November 2013, 6.15pm
Prof. Michael Zürn, WZB Berlin Social Science Center
Authority in a Postnational Order
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 4 December 2013, 6.15pm
Prof. Ian Hurd, Northwestern University
Politics of the International Rule of Law
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 11 December 2013, 6.15pm
Prof. David A. Lake, University of California, San Diego
Public and Private Authority in Global Governance
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 15 January 2014, 6.15pm
Prof. Armin von Bogdandy, Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"/Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law
The Advent of International Public Authority
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 22 January 2014, 6.15pm
Prof. Clifford Bob, Duquesne University
Contention, Resistance, and International Institutions
For further information: click here...

Mittwoch, 29. Januar 2014, 18.15 Uhr
Prof. Harald Müller, Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"/Peace Research Institute Frankfurt
Anarchy, Hierarchy, Polyarchy, Monarchy or else? What sort of global rule for a time of power change?
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 5. Februar 2014, 6.15pm
Prof. Nicholas Onuf, Florida International University
Rule and Rules in International Relations
For further information: click here...

Wednesday, 12. Februar 2014, 6.15pm
Prof. Christopher Daase/Prof. Nicole Deitelhoff, Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"/Peace Research Institute Frankfurt
A Gordian Knot? Rule and Resistance in International Relations
For further information: click here...


Past Lecture Series: click here...

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