Research Team 1

Power and Global Order

The Power and Global Order Research Team addresses the effects of current power shifts on actors’ abilities to solve multilevel governance challenges, such as climate change, pandemics, inequality, and international and human insecurity. With the empowerment of new actors, including not only rising powers but also a diverse set of non-state actors, new and sometimes unconventional cooperation patterns emerge at all levels of social life. The rise of new regional and global powers has led to the establishment of steering mechanisms such as the G20 and intergovernmental networks such as the BRICS. These often overshadow more traditional interstate alignments such as military alliances, which dominated much of the Cold War era. Federal states, subnational bureaucracies, and political parties have joined transnational networks and begun conducting their own “foreign policy”; terrorist groups have organised into global networks, producing one of the central threats within our contemporary world. This increasingly polycentric global order is, on the one hand, associated with increased opportunities for interaction and more flexibility in terms of partner choice at the regional and international levels. On the other hand, the multiplication and overlapping of institutions engendered by this new order has caused fragmentation and disorder that might hinder the production of (global) public goods. Against this backdrop, the research team seeks to address the following questions:

  • What are the main traits of new cooperation patterns across levels of social organisation? What determines (strategic) choices made by actors to favour one institution over another?
  • How do new steering mechanisms impact the ability of actors to resolve governance challenges, and what are the consequences of these new mechanisms in terms of the stability, legitimacy, effectiveness, and justice of global order?
  • How and under what conditions do rising powers interact, cooperate, and compete with other actors at the international, transnational, regional, and local levels? Do rising powers contest existing institutions in order to compete for status and pursue their interests?
  • What is the role of world regions as one arena of governance in the reconstruction of the global order, and how are such regions socially constructed?

Current Research Projects

H2020 (ITN / Joint European Doctorate; coordinated by Université de Bruxelles) | 2016 - 2020
Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) (coordinator: Fraunhofer) | 2018 - 2021
Leibniz Competition, Leibniz-Best Minds: Junior Research Groups | 2018 - 2023
Volkswagen Foundation | Ministry of Science and Culture of Lower Saxony, Niedersächsisches Vorab-Programm: Research Cooperation Lower Saxony - Israel | 2018 - 2021

Completed Research Projects

German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD / ProCol Programme) | 2015 - 2016
Jean Monnet Fellowship, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute | 2014 - 2017
Leibniz Competition, Fritz-Thyssen Foundation, GIGA | 2008 - 2018
GIGA, German Research Foundation (DFG) | 2013-2015