International Organizations in Development and Global Inequality: the Influence on Eastern European States

Participant: Dr. Martin Koch (Bielefeld University)

The research project concentrates on the role of international organizations and questions how they shape concepts of development and global inequality and to what extent these concepts establish a certain kind of world order. This question entails three dimensions: (1) the inner-organizational dynamics and decision-making procedures within the international organizations; (2) external relations of the international organizations to their organizational environment (consisting of state and non-state actors such as other international organizations); (3) the kind of world order concerning development and global inequality established by the international organizations. The project develops an organizational studies approach to the international organizations and analyzes the three dimensions by carrying out three case studies on the most relevant international organizations in the field: the World Bank, the United Nations Development Programme, and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. The project was started in 2011 and resulted in a paper presented at the British International Studies Association (BISA) – International Studies Association (ISA) Joint International Conference in Edinburgh 2012.

In sum, the previously started research directions were continue and further developed in 2012 by including new projects, like the Volkswagen-Foundation-funded project “Patterns of Regional and Interregional Cooperation”. In addition, new directions like policy-oriented studies of policy and communication networks and governance were developed not only within individual research projects, but also in order to organize a big international conference on Networks in the Global World in June 2012. At the same time, some new research fields were developed on the basis of new directions taken in CGES within the last two years. For instance, Migration Studies in Europe and Russia have to be named as a new research area of the CGES. This area was introduced through an international workshop organized in Bielefeld in April 2012 in cooperation with the Collaborative Research Center (SFB) “From Heterogeneities to Inequalities” (SFB 882 – Von Heterogenitäten zu Ungleichheiten), and later through the big international conference on Migration in Europe and Russia in autumn 2012 in St. Petersburg.

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