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Restructuring global governance: cosmopolitanism, democracy and the global order

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Cosmopolitanism is concerned to disclose the ethical, cultural and legal basis of political order in a world where political communities and states matter, but not only and exclusively. In circumstances where the trajectories of each and every country are tightly entwined, the partiality of ‘ reasons of state’ needs to be recognised. While states are hugely important vehicles to aid the delivery of effective public recognition, equal liberty and social justice, they should not be thought of as ontologically privileged. They can be judged by how far they deliver these public goods and how far they fail; for the history of states is marked, of course, not just by phases of bad leadership and corruption but also by the most brutal episodes. A cosmopolitanism relevant to our global age must take this as a starting point, and build an ethically sound and politically robust conception of the proper basis of political community, and of the relations among communities. This article examines why cosmopolitanism remains a compelling political philosophy and approach to global challenges. The first section sets out the context of cosmopolitanism, that is, an explanation of why cosmopolitanism is relevant to global political and social problems. It focuses on cosmopolitan values rooted in leading international regimes and organisations. The section that follows explores the structure and meaning of cosmopolitanism in more detail, and sets out how I understand this important concept. The third section discusses the relation between cosmopolitan values and principles and the idea of a cosmopolitan legal community. The final two sections examine the significance of these notions in meeting many of today’s global challenges. The argument is that the multilateral order is inadequate, and the principles that underpin it are inappropriate, to the global issues faced in the 21st century. Cosmopolitanism, it is contended, discloses a more suitable and productive approach. Accordingly, the article offers an account of the relevance of cosmopolitanism to global challenges, rather than a defence of cosmopolitanism against leading criticisms

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en

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http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/32419/

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