Category:Global Governance

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World History as a Thermodynamic Process and the coming of a Third Global World System]]. Peter Pogany.

Introduction by James Quilligan: Beyond State Capitalism: The Commons Economy in our Lifetimes. [4]

See also:

  1. A framework for Local To Global Public Finance
  2. Establishing Global Common Goods, a Global Resource Agency and a Commons Reserve Currency
  3. The Co-Governance and Co-Production of the Commons through Commons Trusts (i.e. Common Wealth Trusts) on the basis of Social Charters
  4. Replacing the scarcity-engineering of neoliberal markets by the abundance engineering of the commons, see the Abundance - Typology and the Wealth Typology
  5. The context for policy change: Four Future Scenarios for the Global System, from: GLOBAL MEGACRISIS. A Survey of Four Scenarios on a Pessimism-Optimism Axis. By William Halal and Michael Marien.
  6. Mark Whitaker's book, Toward a Bioregional State, proposes a global Bioregional Democracy based on Civic Democratic Institutions and a Commodity Ecology


We need a scalable, networked form of social cohesion

"Crude forms of identity are emerging to provide social cohesion as national identity melts away. We need a scalable, networked form of social cohesion to replace those crude forms. That requires finding and reinforcing networks of consensus."

- John Robb (fb, 2020)

Peter Pogany on the Transition towards a Third Thermo-Dynamically Stable World System

"His theory predicts that global society is drifting toward a new form of self-organization that will recognize limits to demographic-economic expansion – but only after we go through a new chaotic transition that will start sometime between now and the 2030s:

"History has recorded two distinct global systems thus far: “laissez faire/metal money,” which spanned most of the 19th century and lasted until the outbreak of World War I, and “mixed economy/weak multilateralism,” which began after 1945 and exists today. The period between the two systems, 1914-1945, was a chaotic transition. This evolutionary pulsation is well known to students of thermodynamics. It corresponds to the behavior of expanding and complexifying material systems.

The exhaustion of oil and other natural resources is pushing the world toward a third global system that may be called “two-level economy/strong multilateralism.” It will be impossible to get there without a new chaotic transition. No repeated warnings, academic advice, moral advocacy, inspired reforms, or political leadership can provide a shortcut around it. But if it took “1914-1945″ to make a relatively minor adjustment in the global order, what will it take to make a major one?”

- Peter Pogany [5] (via Dave McLeod)

Nick Dyer-Witheford on Three Global Solution Tribes

"The conjuncture requires an analysis that comprehends not just at the World Trade Organization and the Zapatistas, but also Al Quaeda (not to mention all the Christian, Hindu, Judaic theocratic fundamentalisms).

Sketching in the ashes of a global war scenario, I propose a triangulation between three points:

a) The logic of neoliberal capitalism. I call this the logic of the World Market. It interpellates a planet of market subjects: consumers.

b) The logic of exclusionary ethno-nationalist-religious movements. I call this the logic of Fundamentalist Reaction. It addresses a planet lethally divided amongst chosen peoples.

c) The logic of collective creativity and welfare proposed by the counter-globalization movements. I call this the logic of Species Beings. It speaks to a planet of commoners. A whole series of molecular energies are currently being attracted, apportioned and annihilated between these three molar aggregates."

- Nick Dyer-Witheford [6]

Jose Ramos on Cosmo-Localism

"Cosmo-Localization describes the dynamic potentials of the globally distributed knowledge commons in conjunction with emerging capacity for localized production of value. The imperative to create economically and ecologically resilient communities is driving initiatives for ‘re-localization’. Yet, such efforts for re-localization need to be put in the context of new technologies, national policy, transnational knowledge regimes and the wider global knowledge commons."

- Jose Ramos [7]

A.J. Toynbee on the role of Small Scale within Big Scale

“The present day global set of sovereign states is not capable of keeping peace, and it is not capable of saving the biosphere’s non-replaceable natural resources. What has been needed for the last 5,000 years, has become technologically feasible in the last 100, but not yet politically, is a global body politic composed of cells on the scale of the Neolithic-Age village community - a scale on which participants could be personally acquainted with each other, while each of them would also be a citizen of the world state.”

- A.J. Toynbee [8]

Brian Holmes on how market and state failure can lead to a commons resurgence at the global scale

"Minqi Li's claim is that too many formerly peripheral countries -- especially the giants, India and China -- have moved into the position of what the world systems theorists call "semi-peripheral" countries, supplying mid-range or partially elaborated products to the central, high-technology producers. The result is a declining pool of people to exploit, both in terms of labor and resources, and in terms of defenseless markets that must necessarily buy products from the center. When large percentages of the world population have access to at least mid-level producer technology, capital can no longer accumulate at the former centers, whose power declines. The current state of affairs in Western Europe and the US/Canada seems to bear this thesis out.

In such a perspective, the p2p ideas and those of everyone working on p2p and commons approaches become far more pertinent. When the centers of capital accumulation can off the fruits of very high technology to all of those, across the world, who rise into the middle classes, then there is scant likelihood of winning them over to a cooperative approach -- the powers of capitalist seduction are just too strong. Yet in a condition of long-term stagnation, coupled with environmental threats stemming directly and visibly from capital accumulation, alternative proposals may become much more attractive across a flattening global hierarchy."

- Brian Holmes, August 2014

Engage Global, Test Local, Spread Viral

John Boik:

"No matter how promising the design of a new system might be, it would be unreasonable to expect that a nation would abruptly drop an existing system in favor of a new one. Nevertheless, a viable, even attractive strategy exists by which new systems could be successfully researched, developed, tested, and implemented. I call it engage global, test local, spread viral.

Engage global means to engage the global academic community and technical sector, in partnership with other segments of society, in a well-defined R&D program aimed at computer simulation and scientific field testing of new systems and benchmarking of results. In this way, the most profound insights of science can be brought into play.

Test local means to scientifically test new designs at the local (e.g., city or community) level, using volunteers (individuals, businesses, non-profits, etc.) organized as civic clubs. This approach allows testing by relatively small teams, at relatively low cost and risk, in coexistence with existing systems, and without legislative action.

Spread viral means that if a system shows clear benefits in one location (elimination of poverty, for example, more meaningful jobs, or less crime) it would likely spread horizontally, even virally, to other local areas. This approach would create a global network of communities and cities that cooperate in trade, education, the setup of new systems, and other matters. Over time, its impact on all segments of society would grow.

Cities, big and small, are the legs upon which all national systems rest. Already cities and their communities are hubs for innovation. With some further encouragement and support, and the right tools and programs, they could become more resilient and robust, and bigger heroes in the coming great transition." (

Carl Schmitt on how a world state based on reciprocity would overcome perpetual war

"Were a world state to embrace the entire globe and humanity, then it would be no political entity and could only loosely be called a state. If, in fact, all humanity and the entire world were to become a unified entity . . . [and should] that interest group also want to become cultural, ideological, or otherwise more ambitious, and yet remain strictly nonpolitical, then it would be a neutral consumer or producer co- operative moving between the poles of ethics and economics. It would know neither state nor kingdom nor empire, neither republic nor monarchy, neither aristocracy nor democracy, neither protection nor obedience, and would altogether lose its political character."

- Carl Schmitt, cited by Kojin Karatani, Structure of World History, p. 305

John Bunzl on the Need for Simultaneous Policy To Overcome the Limitations of the Nation-State

The simple fact, then, is there can be no change to the existing OS (= operating system) without a transformation of the nation-state system. It must somehow be transformed from its present mode of destructive competition to a new mode of fruitful cooperation. In our globalized and highly interconnected world, there simply is no other alternative if we want things to change for the better. Yes, there may be minor changes and improvements that could be possible lower down the system at local, national or regional levels. But without a change of the OS at the global level, lower-level changes will always be hampered, undermined and ultimately prove futile. The pathology at the top of the system will always trickle its poison to the lower levels. Indeed, to think we could make our global economy just and sustainable without cooperative governance on the same global scale is just wishful thinking. Fortunately, the Simultaneous Policy (Simpol) campaign offers a practical answer to the question of how to effect this transformation." (

Arran Gare on the Need for Strong Democracy

“The current form of the globalized economy has disempowered local communities and is characterized by massive concentrated power in a global ruling class of managers based in transnational corporations. These power relations are inimical to achieving sustainable development. What are now required are institutions that can re-embed markets in communities, making markets serve the ends of these communities rather than enslaving communities to the logic of disembedded markets, manipulated to serve the interests of these global power elites. A global economy is unavoidable, but it needs to be radically transformed and economic life re-localized as much as Possible.” (

G. Kallis on 'When Autonomy becomes Heteronomy'

“Self-limitation requires institutions at higher levels to secure the endurance of agreed limits.”

“The setting of limits is then partly a problem of global, collective action: can we set up the higher-level international institutions that can control, say, carbon emissions or aggression or competition, and let nations and lower-level polities set up their own limits?” (

Robert Conan Ryan on the Fifth Magisterium of the Commons

"Neither science nor technology can provide the answers to the correct human limits and environmental limits One of my conclusions, in my historical analysis, is that we need a fifth Magisterium: the environmental magisterium, a set of institutions with special powers to balance the others.

We therefore need international organizations that can actually block environmental exploitation and manage resources with more independence from the other magistetia powers.

The other conclusion: strengthening the powers of the cultural commons to develop better ways of living for their own sake , rather than for the sake of business .

By strengthening the cultural commons and adding a true environmental Magisteria to our world system, we could solve many institutional problems that otherwise seem unsolvable."

- Robert Conan Ryan [9]

On the Necessity of Intermediary Scales for the Legitimacy of the Planetary

"If you just say we need a “global management authority” and don’t think about the intermediate scales by which people have relations to it, that’s a problem.

I want to keep making my Montesquieuian and Tocquevillian argument for the intermediate scale: Even the planetary scale depends in some part on legitimacy, participation, acceptance and recognition of problems that come from these intermediate scales. Now, that doesn’t mean that everybody participates in making every decision; you could have a technocratic planetary management linked to a more or less democratic governance structure, with some mechanism of democratic participation. But when you centralize, be sure that you have also created mechanisms for decentralized discourse in relation to the center."

- Craig Calhoun [10]

Jeffery Ladish, on why, absent global coordination, future technology will cause human extinction

"Absent strong coordination mechanisms, future technological development suffers from the unilateralist's curse. Real global coordination is necessary to systematically disincentivize the creation of dangerous tech. And even then, disincentivizing the creation of dangerous tech is insufficient, because it may not be easy to tell in advance which technologies will prove dangerous. Even if every country in the world agreed to share intelligence about technological threats and enforce international laws about their use, there is no guarantee a black marble would not be pulled out by accident. A global framework must also incentivize rigorous risk analysis, the right kinds of caution, and quick responses to potentially dangerous developments. Presently, several organizations are undergoing difficult research into the potential pitfalls of artificial general intelligence. There is little agreement about the right approach to safe development. Other risks, like those posed from synthetic biology, have no dedicated research organizations and only receive a small amount of attention in the literature today. To overcome these problems, there must be a powerful international mandate to systematically study these risks and create thorough and practical risk reduction frameworks that can be applied in every part of the world."

- Jeffery Ladish [11]


Global Commons and Participatory International Systems

  1. Global Commons and Common Sense. Jorge Buzaglo. real-world economics review, issue no. 51 [12] : policy proposals for a global governance of planetary commons
  2. Four Principles and Corollaries of Network Society and the New International Governance. By by Alexander Schellong, Philipp Mueller. [13]
  3. Hilary Cottam on Participatory Global Governance Systems: Winter 2010 (Vol.XXXI. No 4) edition of the Harvard International Review. [14]
  4. Philipp Mueller on Planetary Public Policy‎ and Open Statecraft
  5. Steve Waddell on Global Action Networks
  6. Developing the Meta Services for the Eco-Social Economy: on developing a framework for an eco-social economy - includings its arrangements to manage natural commons. Text proposed by Feasta, Ireland. By Brian Davey with the assistance of John Jopling.
  7. In his book, Occupy World Street, Ross Jackson proposes the creation of a Gaian League.
  8. The Political Economy of Sharing. By Adam Parsons.

Institutional Proposals for Global Governance

On the Influence of Technology on Global Politics

Via [15]

  • ‘algorithmic regulation’,
  • ‘government as a platform’ (Tim O’Reilly),
  • ‘direct technocracy’ viz. ‘info-states’ (Parag Khanna),
  • ‘smart states’ (Beth Noveck), or
  • ‘social physics’ (Alex Pentland)

People and Visions

Poor Richard: Framing the discussion in the contect of P2P-driven global governance

Poor Richard:

"Can a hollowed-out, privatized government to effectively cope with the increasing complexity of social and environmental crises such as global warming.

I agree that the failure of government regulation to curb the destructive activity of large corporations is only likely to worsen with the increasing privatization of government and the increasing complexity of global problems. So what can p2p culture do about this?

1. Establish powerful, confederated P2P Guilds and Leagues based on various global commons of knowledge and expertise so that mitigations, adaptations, and other interventions can be crowd-sourced by massively distributed, parallel, and open networks of peers.

2. Establish many strong, self-reliant economies at the local geopolitical (or Eco-political) level by forming partnerships between the P2P guilds and progressive local communities. These partnerships would maximize economies of scope via peer production and would also be strongly confederated with their peers bio-regionally, nationally, and globally.

3. One more maneuver that may be necessary to assist this process I will dub “castling”, a term borrowed from the game of chess. What I mean by this is a shifting of local populations between adjacent local geopolitical jurisdictions (such as cities and counties in the US) so as to create political, social, and economic majorities of p2p culture in the targeted locations.

The resulting strongly confederated p2p cultural strongholds might stand the best chance of competing with the large corporate entities, excluding them from the “castled” commons, and limiting the scope of their environmental destruction." (

Alex Evans

  1. Shooting the Rapids: "argues that the key challenge is to join up the dots between the institutions, processes and actors that we have now. Part of this task involves expanding the scope of multilateralism to engage much more intensively with non-state actors"
  2. Multilateralism for an Age of Scarcity: paper uses the shared operating system / shared awareness / shared platforms framework (follow-up of Shooting the Rapids)

James Greyson

See: Seven Policy Switches for strategic change on a planetary level

James Quilligan

  1. Toward a Commons-based Framework for Global Negotiations
  2. People Sharing Resources. Toward a New Multilateralism of the Global Commons. James Bernard Quilligan Kosmos Journal, Fall | Winter 2009: this article frames what a global commons-based policy and governance structure should be.


  1. Six Modules for the Institutions of the Global Commons‎‎
  2. Three Institutional Spheres of Commoning‎

Towards Open Civil Societies

  • Nora McKeon: Civil Society and the United Nations: Legitimating Global Governance-Whose Voice. (Zed 2009).

Key Resources

Key Articles

James Quilligan

On the overall framework of a Commons and Civil Society oriented global policy and governance framework that insures sustainability:

  • James Bernard Quilligan. People Sharing Resources. Toward a New Multilateralism of the Global Commons. Published in Kosmos Journal, Fall | Winter 2009


Key Books

  • George Monbiot "has written 'The Age of Consent' which calls for a new political movement to democratize existing global institutions." [18]
  • The philosopher Peter Singer has written 'One World' which examines the ethics of globalization. [19]
  • Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri have argued that we are creating a new order of supranational organization in 'Empire'. [20]
  • Book: The Commons and a New Global Governance. Edited by Samuel Cogolati and Jan Wouters. Leuven Global Governance series, Elgar, 2018 [21]: "explores the democratic, institutional, and legal implications of the commons for global governance today."

John Bunzl

Books by John Bunzl, the founder of Simpol, the International Simultaneous Policy Organization.



Typology of Global Institutions

Cadell Last:

"Potential political forms of global institutions.

Global institutions Definitions/examples

(1) Neoliberal institutions: Contemporary globalization is guided via neoliberal institutions that were originally created under patronage of United States of America, and include structures like the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, World Trade Organization which have formed/are forming a global bureaucratic structure that is essentially anti-democratic,

  • A) enabling monopoly control of an international finance system designed to protect


  • B) sublimating all human activity into market activity,
  • C) creating barriers to access of basic necessities and
  • D) failing to address issues of economy-ecology sustainability.

(2) Keynesian institutions: One potential solution to the dominance of neoliberal institutions (1) would include a ‘Keynesian’ institutional construction project where a global state, presumably with top-down mechanisms characteristic of nation-states at the planetary level, would form enabling the democratic election of state officials, the regulation of global market activity, creation of a common monetary union, redistribution of income and wealth, and the organization of international state projects related to social and ecological welfare.

(3) Commons institutions: Another alternative potential solution to the dominance of neoliberal institutions (1) would be the creation of ‘commons institutions’, which, instead of forming a ‘top-down’ global state bureaucracy (2), would include the creation of ‘bottom-up’ distributed multi-level organizational forms that operated on A) various common property regimes (essentially striving for post-property regimes), B) functioned on principles of universal access (post-monetary), and C) multiple context-specific egalitarian-democratic management organizations related to resources and services that are inherently rival (i.e. scarce), and thus need management due to ‘tragedy of the commons’ problems. (Further exploration of the potential nature of ‘commons institutions’, see: Table 3)

(4) Anarchism (no global institutional forms)

Yet another potential solution to the dominance of neoliberal institutions (1) would simply be to negate the entire notion of the need for qualitatively novel large-scale political collectives (‘global institutions’in either a Keynesian or Commons form) (2, 3) and instead direct focus towards the creation and management of locally self-organized egalitarian communities. However, such an approach leaves massive questions of how to approach the real existence of neoliberal institutions, as well as how to approach planetary problems of the common sphere."



1. Stages of Evolving Global Self-Organization


Source: Stages of Evolving Global Self-Organization, from "What’s wrong with the world? Rationality! A critique of economic anthropology in the spirit of Jean Gebser" by Peter Pogany. Shenandoah Valley Research Press, 5. November 2010

2. Characteristics of the third global epoch, according to Peter Pogany


Source: David MacLeod added another stage, GS3, to Peter Pogany's table.

Pages in category "Global Governance"

The following 200 pages are in this category, out of 400 total.

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