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International responses to state failure: challenges of cooperation in a multi-polar world

  • Date(s)
    24 February 2009
  • Location

Examining the challenges of weak and fragile states in a multi-polar world, the latest Foresight seminar, entitled "International responses to state failure: challenges of cooperation in a multi-polar world", has taken place in London on 24 February.

The seminar focused on how the transition to a multi-polar world is affecting international responses to "failing states" and crisis areas. From Pakistan and Afghanistan to Somalia and the Palestinian territories, the dangers presented by territories with weak governance structures are evident. Yet, the unilateral strategies of the Bush administration that focused on military solutions made international cooperation on these crisis areas difficult. The new Obama administration has emphasised the importance of multilateral responses and state-building mechanisms, but the US will have to carry out this agenda against the backdrop of a severely weakened economy and a transformed international context. The seminar examined whether the rise of China, Russia and other emerging powers will complicate the process of finding multilateral solutions to the challenges presented by "failing states".

The speakers included Adam Roberts, formerly Montague Burton professor of international relations at Oxford University; Anatol Lieven, professor of war studies, King's College London; Chris Alden, senior lecturer in international relations at the London School of Economics; Pavel Baev, research professor, International Peace Research Institute, Oslo; and Gareth Price, head of the Asia programme at Chatham House. The seminar was chaired by Elena Jurado, head of research, Policy Network.

Organised by the Alfred Herrhausen Society, the International Forum of Deutsche Bank in partnership with Policy Network, Foresight is a new international programme of investigation and debate structured around the challenge of forging common futures in a multi-polar world. Further details can be accessed on the project's specially dedicated website.

If you have any questions about this seminar, or the Foresight project, please contact Policy Network researcher Priya Shankar at pshankar@policy-network.net. Alternatively, for information about our coming events, publications and research, you can sign-up to the Policy Network newsletter here.


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