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Studying Relations Among International Organizations in World Politics: Core Concepts and Challenges

  • Rafael Biermann
  • Joachim A. Koops
Chapter

Abstract

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the main definitions, dimensions, and processes of inter-organizational relations and outlines major concepts required for understanding and analyzing inter-organizational relations in world politics. The chapter is divided into seven sections. After a general introduction, Section 2 clarifies major definitions of the concept (both our understanding of ‘inter-organizational relations’ and of ‘international organizations’), contrasting this with the prevalent ‘regime interaction’ approach; the section also explores different dimensions of inter-organizational relations, such as degrees of formalization or Secretariat and field perspectives. Section 3 explains the growth of interaction among international organizations since 1945, pointing in particular to the proliferation of international organizations, their task expansion, issue-linkage, and political shocks as causal factors; the section also elucidates major stimuli for individual organizations to cooperate. Section 4 focuses on cooperation and competition among organizations, adding some considerations about the management of relations. Section 5 is supposed to open the door for analyses investigating systematically the effectiveness of inter-organizational relations, while Section 6 flags up major theoretical and methodological challenges for students of inter-organizational relations. Finally, Section 7 introduces the approach and structure of this Handbook.

Keywords

Global Governance World Politics Policy Field Boundary Spanner Resource Dependence Theory 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rafael Biermann
    • 1
  • Joachim A. Koops
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Political ScienceFriedrich Schiller UniversityJenaGermany
  2. 2.Vesalius CollegeVrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Global Governance InstituteBrusselsBelgium

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