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HomeDemocratic Representation in and by International Organizations

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Published on Monday, June 19, 2023

Abstract

International organizations (IOs) play a central role in contemporary international law-making: they institutionalize many of the processes through which international law is adopted today, be it through international law-making conferences, international courts or as IO secondary law. Yet, the question of democratic representation in IOs, but also by IOs when they become members of other IOs or intervene as participants in other international law-making processes remains difficult, to say the least.

Announcement

Argument

International organizations (IOs) play a central role in contemporary international law-making: they institutionalize many of the processes through which international law is adopted today, be it through international law-making conferences, international courts or as IO secondary law. Yet, the question of democratic representation (by Member States and/or other public or private institutions or persons involved such as non-governmental organizations, multinational corporations, trade unions, employer’s associations, cities, regions or religious groups) in IOs, but also by IOs when they become members of other IOs or intervene as participants in other international law-making processes remains difficult, to say the least. It is one of the many dimensions of the deficit in democratic legitimacy of international law, but one that is rarely addressed as such today –although it has not always been the case and not with respect to all IOs equally. There are many reasons for the contemporary side-lining of the question of democratic representation both in international organizations’ law and in international democratic theory. It suffices to mention two of them here: one is the vexed relationship between IOs and “politics” (not to mention democratic politics), and another lies in the (over)emphasis on civil society “participation” and other forms of “stakeholder” inclusion.

The conference’s aims will be to discuss those issues, but also to examine how IOs could be designed and organized under international law in the future so as to ensure sufficient democratic representation of all those they claim to bind legally, either directly or through their Member States. Various specialists of representation in both international organizations’ law and democratic theory have been invited to explore those issues and many others at the conference. The conference is organized around three sets of issues: representation inside IOs (i.e. the different types of public and private representatives and their articulation in different IO deliberation and decision-making processes) (i), through IOs (i.e. the contribution of those forms of public and private representation within IOs to the institutionalization and organization of the relevant public and private representative institutions as such) (ii) and by IOs (i.e. when they become members of other IOs or participate in external international law-making processes) (iii).

Programme

22 juin 2023

  • 08:30 - 08:50 Samantha Besson Democratic Representation in, through and by International Organizations, An Introduction
  • 08:50 - 09:30 Pierre Rosanvallon Renouveau ou crépuscule de la notion de représentation
  • 09:30 - 10:00 Philip Pettit International Representation: Some General Principles
  • 10:00 - 10:30 Francis Cheneval Democratic Representation in International Organization
  • 11:00 - 11:30 Jacob Katz Cogan The Four Modes of Representation in International Organizations 
  • 11:30 - 12:00 Marie-Clotilde Runavot Représentation démocratique et parlementarisation des organisations internationales : entre faux-amis et faux-semblants
  • 12:00 - 12:15 Franck Petiteville Comment
  • 12:15 - 13:15 All panellists Panel Discussion

13:15 - 14:30 : pause

  • 14:30 - 15:00 Marieke Louis Organisations internationales et représentation du secteur privé : quels dilemmes démocratiques ?
  • 15:00 - 15:30 Melissa J. Durkee The Ambivalent Logics of Business Representation in International Organizations
  • 15:30 - 16:00 Anne Peters Representation in and by International Organizations: A Case Study of the World Organization of Animal Health
  • 16:30 - 17:00 Jochen von Bernstorff Making Silent Majorities Vocal in Times of Planetary Crisis: Coalitions of the Most Affected in International Institutional Law
  • 17:00 - 17:15 Yves Sintomer Comment
  • 17:15 - 18:15 All panellists Panel Discussion

23 juin 2023

  • 09:30 - 10:00 Terry Macdonald International Organizations as Orchestrators of Represented Constituencies: The Case of the Global Compact on Refugees
  • 10:00 - 10:30 Évelyne Lagrange Améliorer la délibération dans, entre et sur les organisations internationales : le potentiel des organes subsidiaires consultatifs
  • 10:30 - 11:00 Édouard Dubout & Dominique Ritleng La représentation démocratique dans l'Union européenne : démocratiser la démocratie ?
  • 11:30 - 12:00 Samantha Besson & José Luis Martí No International Democratic Representation without Sovereignty—Lifting the Democratic Veil of Functionalist, Incorporation and Agency Theories of Representation by International Organizations
  • 12:00 - 12:15 Charles Girard Comment 
  • 12:15 - 13:15 All panellists Panel Discussion

13:15 - 14:30 : pause

  • 14:30 - 15:00 Olivier de Frouville General Conclusions
  • 15:00 - 16:00 All participants General Discussion
  • 16:00 - 16:15 Samantha Besson Concluding Remarks

Speakers

  • Jochen von Bernstorff (University of Tübingen);
  • Samantha Besson (Collège de France, Paris and University of Fribourg);
  • Francis Cheneval (University of Zurich);
  • Édouard Dubout (University Paris-Panthéon-Assas);
  • Melissa J. Durkee (University of Georgia; Athens);
  • Olivier de Frouville (University Paris-Panthéon-Assas);
  • Évelyne Lagrange (University Paris 1-Panthéon-Sorbonne);
  • Marieke Louis (Centre Marc Bloch, Berlin);
  • Terry MacDonald (University of Melbourne);
  • José Luis Martí (University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona);
  • Anne Peters (Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg);
  • Philip Pettit (University of Princeton and Australian National University, Canberra);
  • Dominique Ritleng (University of Strasbourg); Pierre Rosanvallon (Collège de France, Paris);
  • Marie-Clotilde Runavot (University of Perpignan Via Domitia).

Commentators:

  • Olivier de Frouville (University Paris-Panthéon-Assas);
  • Charles Girard (University Jean Moulin Lyon 3);
  • Bernard Manin (EHESS, Paris);
  • Yves Sintomer (University Paris 8-Vincenne-Saint-Denis).

Subjects

Places

  • Amphithéâtre Maurice Halbwachs - 11 Place Marcelin Berthelot
    Paris, France (75005)

Event attendance modalities

Full on-site event


Date(s)

  • Thursday, June 22, 2023
  • Friday, June 23, 2023

Keywords

  • représentation, démocratie, droit international, organisation internationale

Information source

  • Louis Hill
    courriel : louis [dot] hill [at] college-de-france [dot] fr

License

CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Democratic Representation in and by International Organizations », Conference, symposium, Calenda, Published on Monday, June 19, 2023, https://doi.org/10.58079/1bg7

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