Individuals and states as democratic subjects

Derk Bienen, Volker Rittberger, Wolfgang Wagner
1997 Peace Review  
Meaningful politics has been transferred increasingly from the national to the international arena. Substantively, more national control over public policy making cannot be regained, short of impairing certain desired outcomes-if it can be regained at all. Day-to-day activities within nations increasingly bear the mark of events occurring across the world and they generate their own global reverberations as well. The scope of national (democratic) decision making seems like it will diminish in
more » ... he future. Yet in the long run, international policy making will require democratic legitimacy. This claim stems from two arguments. First, a causal relation exists between legitimacy and effectiveness. The legitimacy of international institutions must be enhanced because those that lack legitimacy seldom act effectively over the long run. Second, since democracy has become a universal value, any institution making substantive decisions faces demands for democratic procedures. As the role of international institutions in global governance grows, so too do democratic expectations. Reforms of international organizations must promote democracy not merely effectiveness. Thus, we must better conceptualize democracy at the international level. We'll do so here by focusing on the U.N. system.
doi:10.1080/10402659708426073 fatcat:rjcn6rniwzbalgx3ottfhqv6xe