Ngos vs. State Dominance

As reported by Kegley and Blanton (2010), a significant trend seen in international affairs has been the growth of Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) which had risen to 27,723 by 2007.   This is certainly a strong indication that NGOs reflect the rise in a worldly political representation that stretches beyond national boundaries while possibly weakening the relationship of the individual to the sovereignty of the state.   Yet it is doubtful that state dominance will ever be completely replaced by NGOs and other international organizations.

As pointed out in my earlier posting, plainly a gap exists between the institutions of global governance as we understand them today and the transnational challenges and opportunities presented in the early beginnings of the twenty-first century—internal civil conflicts, weapons of mass destruction, deepening poverty, spread of terrorist enterprises, global warming and violation of human rights to name a few.   It can be argued that in building today’s global governance, it looks probable that the traditional sovereign nation state apparatus will continue to frame the global canvas and still provide the resources, authority, knowledge and wealth required for international governance.   Nonetheless, the broadening leadership and collective responsibility produced by informal groupings like NGOs are taking hold and connecting their work in a corner of the canvas to the global canvas as a whole with widening influence and results.

Perhaps then what will work best in the twenty-first century global governance is a wide consensus on norms and standards through coalitions beyond the status quo of like-minded states.   NGOs can be seen as coalitions of the willing because they “are inspired to action by their interests and values” (Kegley and Blanton, 2010, p. 192).   In other words, NGOs are accountable to themselves and their principles and realize the opportunities inherent in sustain collaboration.   Since NGOs do not serve as...