Bulletin n. 1/2017
June 2017
  • Section A) The theory and practise of the federal states and multi-level systems of government
  • Section B) Global governance and international organizations
  • Section C) Regional integration processes
  • Section D) Federalism as a political idea
  • Panke Diana
    The institutional design of the United Nations General Assembly: an effective equalizer?
    in International Relations , vol. 31, n. 1, march ,  2017 ,  3-20
    ABSTRACT: Most international organizations are based on the principle of equality of states. Their institutional design grants all member states the same formal rights. Although formally equal, states differ immensely concerning their power capacities and size. Can institutional designs of international organizations mitigate real-world power- and size-related differences between member states, and if so, to which extent? To provide an answer, this article focuses on the United Nations General Assembly, which combines an equalizing institutional design with a large very heterogeneous membership. It shows that the strength of the equalizing effect varies across stages of the policy cycle. It is the weakest in the negotiation stage and the strongest in the final decision-making stage, while institutional design of international organizations has a de facto equalizing effect of medium strength in the agenda setting stage. Thus, while power and capacity differences matter, larger powerful states are not systematically better off throughout the entire policy cycle.
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