Comity: Multilateralism in the New Cold War
This book explores a critical new juncture where globalisation is in retreat and global norms of behaviour are not converging. It provides an expert analysis on how this situation has arisen from a combination of changes in the relative power and position of nations and the different values behind the organisation of domestic government in democracies and authoritarian states. The book challenges the assumption that differences in the way countries organise their domestic form of government can be kept separate from rulemaking at the international level. It examines how democracies can defend their own values relative to others, the methods of influence, and the ways of managing conflict between contending values. Comity maps a path away from impasse to where democracies cooperate to make rules for themselves that can then be extended to others. It also discusses the legitimacy of this form of international rulemaking. Vibert concludes with the need for democracies to address their own democratic backsliding and to refresh their alliances with other democracies.
For a brief summary of critical issues discussed in the book, please see here.
Read Professor Richard Caplan's review of the book here.
Making a 21st Century Constitution: Playing Fair in Modern Democracies
Democratic governments are increasingly under pressure from populists, and distrust of governmental authority is on the rise. Economic causes are often blamed. Making a 21st Century Constitution proposes instead that constitutions no longer provide the kind of support that democracies need in today's conditions, and outlines ways in which reformers can rectify this. The book addresses key sources of constitutional obsolescence, identifies the main challenges for constitutional updating and sets out the ways in which constitutions may be made suitable for the 21st century. It highlights the need for reformers to address the deep diversity of values in today's urbanized societies, the blind spots and content-lite nature of democratic politics, and the dispersion of authority among new chains of intermediaries.
The New Regulatory Space: Reframing Democratic Governance
This book analyses changing patterns of governance in modern democratic societies. It discusses how far we should be concerned about such changes and clarifies the status of regulation, revealing how regulation should be viewed, not only as a technique offering specific responses to particular policy problems, but also in its new role as the key mechanism for making adjustments between the different systems of coordination used in contemporary governance. There are three main aims of the book: to clarify the status and role of regulation itself in modern systems of social coordination; to identify the key challenges to the integrity of the different systems and how far they can be attributed to the growth of regulation; and to identify what to do to protect the integrity of the different domains against challenge. This work innovates in the use of the concept of the regulatory space to analyse relationships across systems of governance as well as in the utilisation of social framing as methods of inquiry into why we regulate. It breaks new ground in discussing accountability in terms of being able to monitor the changing patterns.
Democracy and Dissent: The Challenge of International Rule Making
The book examines the fundamental issues involved in attempts to rethink international institutions and their rule making procedures. It analyses the basic problems with the existing system and the main approaches to its reform. The book repudiates the idea that there are any simple institutional `fixes' for current problems, such as relying on the G20 to coordinate global rule making, and also rejects more ambitious attempts to prescribe new general organising principles for world governance. It calls instead for specific remedies for specific problems. The author recommends new procedures for all international rule making, so that both expert groups and governments are subject to much stronger external checks on what they do.
The Rise of the Unelected: Democracy and the New Separation of Powers
Unelected bodies, such as independent central banks, economic regulators, risk managers and auditors have become a worldwide phenomenon. Democracies are increasingly turning to them to demarcate boundaries between the market and the state, to resolve conflicts of interest and to allocate resources, even in sensitive ethical areas such as those involving privacy or biotechnology. This book examines the challenge that unelected bodies present to democracy and argues that, taken together, such bodies should be viewed as a new branch of government with their own sources of legitimacy and held to account through a new separation of powers. It suggests that such bodies help promote a more informed citizenry because they provide a more trustworthy and reliable source of information for decisions.
Europe Simple, Europe Strong: The Future of European Governance
A fundamental debate on the 'Future of Europe' is now underway across Europe with an official Convention headed by former French President Valerie Giscard d′Estaing considering wide ranging reforms to the existing Union. In an original and challenging contribution to this debate, Europe Simple, Europe Strong urges a radical rethink of the framework for the continent–wide political union now possible and desirable in Europe. It argues that the key to a successful system of government is the way in which it connects two systems of choice – market choice and political choice – and that Europe′s present approach is likely to lead to a situation where neither system works well. The book examines the ways in which the two systems of choice have been impacted by globalisation and the information revolution and assesses how, in this new setting, European governance can be reformed to get the best out of both systems of choice. It concludes in favour of a new and simpler democratic structure. In looking at how systems of market choice and political choice relate to each other in today's setting, the book brings together contemporary thinking on the regulatory functions of government, the role of rights–based politics in relation to vote–based politics and the relevance of models of business organisation to the organisation of government.
Europe: A Constitution for the Millennium
The focus of debate in Europe has shifted from economic integration to political integration. Political union is arousing opposition and threatens to redevide Europe because there is no generally accepted model for political union and confusion over the principles. The book argues that political integration in Europe cannot be approached indirectly as the automatic outcome of economic union but must be rooted in constitutional values. It makes specific recommendations on such topics as voting rules, the way powers should be organized between the Union and Member States, as well as the role of the European Parliament and on the Court of Justice.
The Journal of Constitutional Political Economy (Volume 7, Issue 4, 1996) dedicated a special issue to the discussion of the topic of the book.