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Stephen M. Walt is the Robert and Renee Belfer Professor of International Affairs at Harvard University. He previously taught at Princeton University and the University of Chicago, where he served[…]

Are the post-War structures sufficiently inclusive of new powers?

Question: Are global institutions up to the challenges of globalization?

Stephen Walt: Well the set of global institutions that we have now are all sort of leftover from World War II. And they were created for particular contexts. I’m thinking here of the World Bank, the United Nations, particularly the structure of the Security Council. And everybody understands that these are kind of outmoded in terms of either their membership or their powers. What no one has done yet is been able to devise sort of, “Here’s the blueprint for how we should fix all of them.” I think the biggest issue there, of course, is you have to devise a set of institutions that are sufficiently inclusive of the new power centers, right? A Security Council in which India is excluded in 2030 doesn’t make a whole lots of sense to me. A Security Council in which Brazil is not a player, again, doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. So one part of it is just reforming the overall global architecture.

Recorded on: 10/8/07

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