Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis

, Volume 5, Issue 2–3, pp 209–226 | Cite as

Analyzing Global Governance Failure: A Philosophical Framework

  • John Dixon
  • Rhys Dogan


This article seeks to make a contribution to theory development by explicating the competing approaches (explanatory frameworks and research methods) that can be used in the analysis of episodes of global governance failures—undesirable events (such as war, or incidents of international terrorism) and behaviors (such as rogue political leaders accumulating weapons of mass destruction or supporting international terrorist groups) that are a consequence of the ineffectiveness of a global governance process. It does so by constructing a methodological taxonomy, which enables the identification of the competing philosophical methodologies that underpin contending perspectives on the causation of, and solutions to, episodes of global governance failures, by reference to contesting understandings of what knowledge is (an epistemological issue) and what exists that is capable of giving rise to consequences (an ontological issue). It then identifies the epistemological and ontological challenges facing policy analysts seeking to analyze and address global governance failure. Meeting these challenges requires the adoption of a methodology that draws insights from the epistemological and ontological syntheses that have emerged within contemporary social theory.

social theory philosophy of the social sciences global governance 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Archer, M.S. (1990). “Human Agency and Social Structure: A Critique of Giddens.” In: J. Clark, C. Modgil, and S. Modgil (eds.), Anthony Giddens: Consensus and Controversy. Basingstoke, Hamp., UK: Falmer Press.Google Scholar
  2. Archer, M.S. (1995). Realist Social Theory: The Morphogenetic Approach. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Archer, M.S. (1996). “Social Integration and System Integration: Developing the Distinction.” Sociology 30(4), 679–699.Google Scholar
  4. Baert, P. (1998). Social Theory in the Twentieth Century. Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  5. Banks, M. (ed.). (1948). Conflict in World Society: A New Perspective on International Relations. New York: St. Martin's Press.Google Scholar
  6. Barrett, W. (1958). Irrational Man: A Study in Existential Philosophy. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.Google Scholar
  7. Bentham, J. [1802] (1987). “A Plan for an Universal and Perpetual Peace.” In H.P. Kainz (ed.), Philosophical Perspectives on Peace. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  8. Bhaskar, R. (1975). A Realist Theory of Science. Leeds: Leeds Books.Google Scholar
  9. Bhaskar, R. [1979] (1998). The Possibility of Naturalism: A Philosophical Critique of the Contemporary Human Sciences, 3rd ed. London and New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  10. Blumer, H. (1969). Symbolism Interactionism: Perspective and Method. New York: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  11. Boucher, D. (1998). Political Theories of International Relations: From Thucydides to the Present. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Bourdieu, P. (1998). Practical Reason. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  13. Brown, C. (1992). International Relations Theory: New Normative Approaches. London: Harvester Wheatsheaf.Google Scholar
  14. Brown, C. (1995). “International Political Theory and the Idea of an Old Community.” In K. Booth, and S. Smith (eds.), International Relations Theory Today.Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  15. Bull, H. (1977). The Anarchical Society: A Study of Order in World Politics. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  16. Carr, H.E. (1946). The Twenty Years' Crisis, 1919–1939. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  17. Castells, M. (1996). The Information Age: 1, The Rise of the Network Society. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  18. Castells, M. (1997). The Information Age: 2, The Power of Identity. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  19. Castells, M. (1998). The Information Age: 3, End of Millenium. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  20. Cyert, R.M., and J.G March [1963] (1992). A Behavioral Theory of the Firm. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  21. Delanty, G. (2000). Modernity and Postmodernity: Knowledge, Power and Self. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  22. Diehl, P.F. (1989). The Politics of International Organizations: Patterns and Insights. Chicago: Dorsey Press.Google Scholar
  23. Dixon, J. (2002). Responses to Governance: The Governing of Corporations, Societies and the World. Westport, CT: Praeger.Google Scholar
  24. Dixon, J., and R. Dogan. (2002). “Hierarchies, Networks and Markets: Responses to Societal Governance Failures.” Administrative Theory and Praxis 24(1), 175–196.Google Scholar
  25. Edwards, M. (1999). Future Positive: International Cooperation in the 21st Century. London: Earthscan and Sterling.Google Scholar
  26. Falk, R. (1992a). “Democratizing, Internationalizing and Globalizing: A Collage of Blurred Images.” Third World Quarterly 13(4), 627–640.Google Scholar
  27. Falk, R. (1992b). “The Making of Global Citizenship.” In J. Brecher et al. (eds.), Global Visions: Beyond the New World Order. Boston: South End Press.Google Scholar
  28. Falk, R. (1994). “From Geopolitics to Geogovernance: WOMP and Contemporary Political Discourse.” Alternatives 19(2), 145–154.Google Scholar
  29. Falk, R. (1995). On Humane Governance: Towards a Global Politics. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  30. Feld, W.J., and R.L. Pfaltzgraff, with L. Hurwitz. (1988). International Organizations: A Comparative Approach. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  31. Frederic, H. (1992). “Computer Networks and the Emergence of Global Civil Society.” In L.M. Harasim (ed.), Global Networks: Computers and International Communication. Pacific Grove, CA: Cole.Google Scholar
  32. Garfinkel, H. (1967). Studies in Ethnomethodology. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  33. Giddens, A. (1984). The Constitution of Society. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  34. Giddens, A. (1993). New Rules of Sociological Method: A Positive Critique of Interpretative Sociologies, 2nd ed. Stanford, CA: Stanford University.Google Scholar
  35. Goffman, E. [1959] (1990). The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. Harmondsworth: Penguin.Google Scholar
  36. Haight, M.R. (1980). A Study of Self-Deception. London: Humanities Press.Google Scholar
  37. Hempel, C.G. (1966). Philosophy of Natural Science. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  38. Hollis, M. (1994). The Philosophy of Social Science: An Introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  39. Huntington, S.P. (1997). The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order. London: Simon & Schuster.Google Scholar
  40. Husserl, Edmund. [1931] (1960). Cartesian Meditations (trans D. Cairns). The Hague, Netherlands: M. Nijhoff.Google Scholar
  41. Jacobson, H.K. (1984). Networks of Interdependence: International Organizations and the Global Political System, 2nd ed. New York: Alfred A Knopf.Google Scholar
  42. Kant, I. [1788] (1998). Critique of Pure Reason (eds. and trans. P. Gruyer, and A.W. Wood), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.Google Scholar
  43. Keohane, R.O. (1984). After Hegemony: Cooperation and Discord in the World Political Economy. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  44. Keohane, R.O. (1989). “Neoliberal Institutionalism: A Perspective onWorld Politics.” In R.O. Keohane (ed.), International Institutions and State Power. Boulder, CO: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  45. Keohane, R.O., and S.J. Nye. (1989). Power and Interdependence 2nd ed. New York: Harper Collins.Google Scholar
  46. Kratochwil, F., and J.G. Ruggie. (1986). “International Organization: A State of the Art or an Art of the State.” International Organization 40(4), 735–775.Google Scholar
  47. Kuhn, T.S. (1970). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, 2nd ed. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  48. Little, R. (2001). “International Regimes.” In J. Baylis and S. Smith (eds.), The Globalization ofWorld Politics: An Introduction to International Relations, 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  49. Lucey, K. (1996). On Knowing and the Known. Buffalo, NY: Prometheus.Google Scholar
  50. March, J.G. (1988). Decisions and Organizations. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  51. March, J.G. (1994). A Primer on Decision-Making. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  52. March, J.G., and J.P. Olsen. (1976). Ambiguity and Change in Organizations. Bergen,Norway: Universitets Forlaget.Google Scholar
  53. March, J.G., and J.P. Olsen. (1989). Rediscovering Institutions. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  54. Mitrany, D.F. (1933). The Progress of International Government. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  55. Mitrany, D.F. (1966). A Working Peace System. Chicago: Quadrangle Books.Google Scholar
  56. Morgenthau, H.J. (1948). Politics Among Nations. New York: Knopf.Google Scholar
  57. Nozick, R. (1981). Philosophical Explanations. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  58. Parker, J. (2000). Structuration. Buckingham: Open University.Google Scholar
  59. Parsons, W. (1995). Public Policy: An Introduction to the Theory and Practice of Policy Analysis. Cheltenham, Glos., UK: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
  60. Peterson, V.S. (ed.). (1992). Gendered States: Feminist (Re)Visions of International Relations Theory, Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.Google Scholar
  61. Popper, K.R. [1959] (2000). The Logic of Scientific Discovery. London: UCL Press.Google Scholar
  62. Rein, M., and D.A. Schön. (1993). “Reframing Policy Discourse.” In F. Fischer and J. Forester (eds.), The Argumentative Turn in Policy Analysis and Planning. London: UCL Press.Google Scholar
  63. Reinecke, W.H. (1998). Global Public Policy: Governing Without Government. Washington,DC: Brooking Institution.Google Scholar
  64. Rosenau, J., and E. Cziempel (eds.). (1992). Governance Without Government: Order and Change in World Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  65. Rosenau, J.N. (1990). Turbulence in World Politics: A Theory of Change and Continuity. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  66. Rosenau, J.N. (1992). “Governance, Order, and Change in World Politics.” In J.N. Rosenau and E.-O. Czempiel, (eds.), Governance without Government: Order and Change in World Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  67. Rosenkrantz, R. (1977). Inference, Method, and Decision. Boston, MA: Reidal.Google Scholar
  68. Schutz, A. [1932] (1967). The Phenomenology of the Social World. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.Google Scholar
  69. Shope, R.K. (1983). The Analysis of Knowing: A Decade of Research. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  70. Slaughter, A.-M. (1997). “The Real New World Order.” Foreign Affairs 76(1), 183–197.Google Scholar
  71. Soros, G. (1998). The Crisis of Global Capitalism: Open Society Endangered. New York: Public Affairs.Google Scholar
  72. Strange, S. [1982] (1997). “Cave! Hic Dragones: A Critique of Regime Analysis.” International Organization 36(2). Reprinted in P.F. Diehl (ed.), The Politics of International Governance: International Organizations in an Interdependent World. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.Google Scholar
  73. Taylor, P. (2001). “The United Nations and International Order.” In J. Baylis and S. Smith (eds.), The Globalization ofWorld Politics: An Introduction to International Relations, 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  74. Thompson, J. (1992). Justice and World Order: A Philosophical Inquiry. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  75. Wallerstein, I. (1979). The Capitalist World-economy: Essays. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  76. Waltz, K.N. (1979). Theory of International Politics. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar
  77. Weick, K.E. (1995). Sensemaking in Organizations. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  78. Wendt, A.E. (1991). “Bridging the Theory/Meta-theory Gap on International Relations.” Review of International Studies 17, 383–392.Google Scholar
  79. Wendt, A.E. (1987). “The Agent-Structure Problem in International Relations Theory.” International Organization 41(3), 335–370.Google Scholar
  80. Wendt, A.E. [1958] (1999). Social Theory of International Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  81. Williams, M., and T. May. (1996). Introduction to the Philosophy of Social Research. London: UCL Press.Google Scholar
  82. Winch, P. (1990). The Idea of Social Science and its Relation to Philosophy 2nd ed. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  83. Young, K. (1979). “Values in the Policy Process.” Policy and Politics 5, 1–22.Google Scholar
  84. Young, O.R. (1982). Resource Regimes: Social Institutions and Natural Resources. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  85. Young, O.R. (1989). International Cooperation: Building Regimes for Natural Resources and the Environment. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  86. Young, O.R. (1992). “The Effectiveness of International Institutions: Hard Cases and Critical Voices.” In J.N. Rosenau and E.-O. Czempiel (eds.), Governance without Government: Order and Change in World Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  87. Zacher, M.W., with B.A. Sutton. (1996). Governing Global Networks: International Regimes for Transportation and Communications. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Dixon
    • 1
  • Rhys Dogan
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Social Policy and Social WorkUniversity of PlymouthDrake Circus, PlymouthU.K.
  2. 2.University of PlymouthDrake Circus, PlymouthU.K

Personalised recommendations