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Undermining American Hegemony
Goods Substitution in World Politics

Daniel H. Nexon, Alexander Cooley, Morten Skumsrud Andersen, Bahar Rumelili, Ann Towns, Julia Bader, Rebecca Adler-Nissen, Benjamin De Carvalho, Halvard Leira, Ole Jacob Sending, Iver B. Neumann
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About the Authors
  • Advancing a new approach to the study of international order, this book highlights the stakes disguised by traditional theoretical languages of power transitions and hegemonic wars. Rather than direct challenges to US military power, the most consequential undermining of hegemony is routine, bottom-up processes of international goods substitution: a slow hollowing out of the existing order through competition to seek or offer alternative sources for economic, military, or social goods. Studying how actors gain access to alternative suppliers of these public goods, this volume shows how states consequently move away from the liberal international order. Examining unfamiliar – but crucial – cases, it takes the reader on a journey from local Faroese politics, to Russian election observers in Central Asia, to South American drug lords. Broadening the debate about the role of public goods in international politics, this book offers a new perspective of one of the key issues of our time.

    • Introduces a new framework to explain how hegemonies are challenged and erode 
    • Innovative cases and new empirics including Central Asia, Latin America and the Northern Atlantic region. Also a case study on the recently formed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) 
    • Comprises contributions from a distinguished group of international authors
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'What awaits us after American hegemony? Undermining Hegemony helps bring the bleary future into focus. Surrounding the subject to subdue it, the contributors of this volume show how ebbing U.S. influence shifts allegiances, alters autonomy, affects identities, and revises norms. But the arguments go beyond current events to enduring patterns. Anyone looking to understand how states large and small create international order should start with this book. Morton Skumsrud Andersen, Alexander Cooley, and Daniel Nexon have assembled a comprehensive work that is timely and timeless.' Joseph M. Parent, Professor of Political Science, University of Notre Dame

    'This volume offers a fascinating analysis of how countries such as China and Russia are seeking to erode US-led liberal international order by contesting the United States' dominant role in providing global public goods in the economic, security and normative realm. Shedding light on the subject from several different angles, the authors succeed in deepening the reader's understanding of how political orders are maintained by the hegemon and challenged by other powers. The book thus makes a highly relevant contribution to the ongoing debate about the provision of international goods and the future of global order, a topic that has only gained importance in the context of the covid-19 pandemic.' Oliver Della Costa Stuenkel, Associate Professor, School of International Relations, Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV)

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    Product details

    • format: Adobe eBook Reader
    • isbn: 9781108957601
  • Table of Contents

    List of abbreviations
    1. Goods substitution and the logics of international order transformation Daniel H. Nexon, Alexander Cooley and Morten Skumsrud Andersen
    2. Goods substitution and counter-hegemonic strategies Alexander Cooley and Daniel H. Nexon
    3. International rankings as normative goods: hegemony and the quest for social status Bahar Rumelili and Ann Towns
    4. China and the Asian infrastructure investment bank: undermining hegemony through goods substitution? Julia Bader
    5. The silk road to goods substitution: central Asia and the rise of new post-western international orders Alexander Cooley
    6. Goods substitution in the USA's back yard: Colombia's diversification strategies under conditions of hierarchy Morten Skumsrud Andersen
    7. Goods substitution at high latitude: undermining hegemony from below in the north Atlantic Rebecca Adler-Nissen, Benjamin De Carvalho and Halvard Leira
    8. Reflections on the volume Ole Jacob Sending and Iver B. Neumann

  • Editors

    Morten Skumsrud Andersen, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs
    Morten Skumsrud Andersen is a Senior Research Fellow at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), in the Research group on Global order and Diplomacy. Andersen has published on theoretical and empirical topics of International Relations, including the history of empires and hierarchy in international politics, conceptual history, NGOs, and practice theory.

    Alexander Cooley, Barnard College, Columbia University
    Alexander Cooley is the Claire Tow Professor of Political Science at Barnard College and Director of Columbia University's Harriman Institute (2016–present). Cooley is the author and/or editor of seven academic books, serves on several international advisory boards, and has testified for the United States Congress and Helsinki Commission.

    Daniel H. Nexon, Georgetown University, Washington DC
    Daniel H. Nexon is Professor of Government and Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He is the author or editor of three other books and the former lead editor of International Studies Quarterly. During 2009–2010 he worked in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Policy) in the Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia office. In 2016 he was one of two coordinators for a group of volunteers that worked on foreign policy issues for the Bernie Sanders campaign, and he remains active in debates about progressive foreign policy.


    Daniel H. Nexon, Alexander Cooley, Morten Skumsrud Andersen, Bahar Rumelili, Ann Towns, Julia Bader, Rebecca Adler-Nissen, Benjamin De Carvalho, Halvard Leira, Ole Jacob Sending, Iver B. Neumann

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