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G. Goodliffe , St. Sberro (Transl. by: Andrei Shelepov ; Translation ed. by: Marina Larionova 1)
  • 1 RANEPA, 11 Prechistenskaya naberezhnaya, Moscow, 119034, Russia

The G20 after Los Cabos: Illusions of Global Economic Governance

2013. Vol. 8. No. 3. P. 31–45 [issue contents]

Gabriel Goodliffe - Professor of International Relations and International Political Economy at the Mexico Autonomous Institute of Technology (ITAM), Río Hondo No. 1 Col. Tizapán San Ángel C.P. 01000 México D.F.; Email: gabriel.goodliffe@itam.mx

Stephan Sberro - PhD in Political Science, Professor at Department of International Studies, Mexico Autonomous Institute of Technology, Co-director of the Institute of European Integration Studies, National Researcher of CONACYT (Mexican Official Council for Developing Science and Technology, Río Hondo No. 1 Col. Tizapán San Ángel C.P. 01000 México D.F.; E-mail: ssberro@itam.mx


The paper is a translation of the similarly named article firstly published in the International Spectator: Italian Journal for International Affairs in December 2012. The translation was made with the permission of the authors.

The failure of the Los Cabos summit to satisfactorily address the European sovereign debt crisis and ominous world economic outlook, let alone agree on concrete measures to improve the oversight and functioning of the global economy, appears to confirm the diminishing effectiveness and relevance of the G20 as an organ of international governance since its inception in December 2008. While few accomplishments were achieved in the area of global governance during the Mexican presidency, acute collective action problems, made worse by the present economic crisis, paralysed the G20 in the lead-up to and during the Los Cabos summit.

These collective action problems and the ensuing failure of global governance are attributable to the absence of leadership evident at both the global and European levels, which in turn testifies to the excessive dispersion of state economic and political power within the international system. The authors emphasize that without such a state to provide – and pay for – the means of compulsion that are synonymous with global governance, individual states remain much more likely to pursue their own narrow national self-interests or to be torn between parochial domestic interests than to act in accordance with collective global goals. It is in this sense that the demotion of the United States and the reticence of China to shoulder responsibility at the global level, or the unwillingness of Germany to assume the burdens of leadership within Europe, bode so ominously for the future. The paper concludes that unless one or more of these states steps forward and take on the duties and costs of leadership, the chances of the G20 realising its goal of providing effective global governance remain slim.


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Citation: Goodliffe G. , Sberro St. (2013) «Gruppa dvadtcati» posle sammita v Los-Kabose: illiuzii global'nogo ekonomicheskogo upravleniia [The G20 after Los Cabos: Illusions of Global Economic Governance ] INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS RESEARCH JOURNAL, 3 (in Russian)
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