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The stakeholder model paradox: How the globalisation of politics fuels domestic advocacy

  • Marcel Hanegraaff (a1) and Arlo Poletti (a2)
Abstract

One of the central assumptions underlying the stakeholder model is that strengthened opportunities for involvement of non-state actors in political procedures hold significant promise for making those procedures more democratically legitimate. However, recent studies show that more open international organisations (IOs) are not perceived as more legitimate by non-state actors. In this article we explore one potential reason to explain this apparent paradox, investigating whether, and under what conditions, strengthened opportunities of stakeholder involvement enable the effective representation of global constituencies. The article shows that globalisation and politicisation of IOs go hand in hand with greater political activity by non-state actors defending domestic, rather than global, interests. Globalisation and politicisation may thus contribute to the exponential growth of the community of non-state actors active at IOs, but they do not make such community more globalised in nature. The article also illustrates that granting greater access to stakeholders in international institutions can somehow mitigate the effects of this underlying structural factors, and that institutional openness disproportionally fosters political activity by civic, rather than business, global stakeholders. We advance these arguments relying on a novel dataset including over eight thousand organisations active at the UN climate conferences and the WTO Ministerial Conferences.

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*Author’s email: m.c.hanegraaff@uva.nl
**Author’s email: arlo.poletti@unitn.it
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10 Agné, Dellmuth, and Tallberg, ‘Does stakeholder involvement foster democratic legitimacy in international organizations?’, pp. 465–88; Dellmuth, L. and Tallberg, J., ‘The social legitimacy of international organizations: Interest representation, institutional performance, and confidence extrapolation in the United Nations’, Review of International Studies, 41:3 (2015), pp. 45114575 .

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19 Agné, Dellmuth, and Tallberg, ‘Does stakeholder involvement foster democratic legitimacy in international organizations?’, p. 10.

20 Macdonald, ‘Citizens or stakeholders?’, pp. 47–68.

21 Agné, Dellmuth, and Tallberg, ‘Does stakeholder involvement foster democratic legitimacy in international organizations?’, pp. 465–88.

22 Dellmuth and Tallberg, ‘The social legitimacy of international organizations’, pp. 4511–475.

23 Nanz and Steffeck, ‘Global governance, participation and the public sphere’, p. 315.

24 Scholte, ‘Civil society and democracy in global governance’, p. 290.

25 Castells, ‘The new public sphere’, p. 84.

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27 D. Held, ‘Democratic accountability and political effectiveness from a cosmopolitan perspective’, pp. 364–91.

28 Agné, Dellmuth, and Tallberg, ‘Does stakeholder involvement foster democratic legitimacy in international organizations?’, pp. 465–88.

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35 Zürn, ‘The politicization of world politics and its effects’, p. 50.

36 Ibid., p. 59.

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38 Haas, Ernst, The Uniting of Europe: Political, Social and Economic Forces 1950–1957 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1958).

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41 Beyers, J., ‘Gaining and seeking access: the European adaptation of domestic interest associations’, European Journal of Political Research, 41:5 (2002), pp. 585612 ; Beyers, J. and Kerremans, B., ‘Domestic embeddedness and the dynamics of multi-level venue-shopping in four EU member-states’, Governance, 25:2 (2012), pp. 262290 ; Klüver, H., ‘Europeanization of lobbying activities: When national interest groups spill over to the European Level’, Journal of European Integration, 32:2 (2010), pp. 175191 ; Dür, A., and Mateo, G., ‘The Europeanization of national interest groups’, European Union Politics, 15:4 (2014), pp. 572594 .

42 Hanegraaff, M. C. and Poletti, A., ‘How participatory is global governance of trade and environment? The cases of WTO and UN climate summits’, in R. Marchetti (ed.), Partnerships in International Policy Making: Civil Society and Public Institutions in European and Global Affairs (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), pp. 51–70.

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44 Tarrow, ‘Transnational politics’, pp. 1–20.

45 Ibid., p. 27.

46 Charnovitz, S., ‘Opening the WTO to non-governmental interests’, Fordham International Law Journal, 24:1 (2000), pp. 173216 ; Robertson, D., ‘Civil society and the WTO’, World Economy, 23:9 (2000), pp. 11191134 .

47 Fischer, D., ‘COP-15 in Copenhagen: How the merging of movements left civil society out in the cold’, Global Environmental Politics, 10:2 (2015), pp. 1117 ; Fischer, D. and Green, J., ‘Understanding disenfranchisement: Civil society and developing countries’ influence and participation in global governance for sustainable development’, Global Environmental Politics, 4:3 (2004), pp. 6584 ; Spiro, P., The new sovereignists: American exceptionalism and its false prophets’, Foreign Affairs, 79:9 (2000), pp. 912 .

48 Dür and De Bièvre, ‘Inclusion without influence’, pp. 79–101; but see Klüver, ‘The contextual nature of lobbying’, pp. 483–506.

49 Hanegraaff and Poletti, ‘How participatory is global governance of trade and environment?’.

50 Keck and Sikkink, Activists beyond Borders.

51 Tarrow, Sidney, The New Transnational Activism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005), p. 26 .

52 See Baumgartner, Frank and Leech, Beth, Basic Interests: The Importance of Groups in Politics and in Political Science (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1998); Yackee, J. and Webb, S., ‘A bias towards business? Assessing interest group influence on the US bureaucracy’, Journal of Politics, 68:1 (2006), pp. 128139 ; Schneider, G., Finke, D., and Baltz, K., ‘With a little help from the state: Interest intermediation in the domestic pre-negotiations of EU legislation’, Journal of European Public Policy, 14:3 (2007), pp. 444459 .

53 See Hanegraaff, M. C., Braun-Poppelaars, C., and Beyers, J., ‘Open the door to more of the same? The development of interest group representation at the WTO’, World Trade Review, 10:4 (2011), pp. 126 .

54 Hanegraaff, M.C., ‘Transnational advocacy over time: Business and NGO mobilization at UN climate summits’, Global Environmental Politics, 15:1 (2015), pp. 83104 .

55 See Muñoz Cabré, M., ‘Issue-linkages to climate change measured through NGO participation in the UNFCCC’, Global Environmental Politics, 11:3 (2011), pp. 1022 .

56 See Hanegraaff, Braun-Poppelaars, and Beyers, ‘Open the door to more of the same?’, pp. 1–26.

57 Nanz and Steffeck, ‘Global governance, participation and the public sphere’, p. 315.

58 Scholte, ‘Civil society and democracy in global governance’, p. 290.

59 Castells, ‘The new public sphere’, p. 84.

60 Dryzek, Deliberative Global Politics; Bohman, Democracy across Borders.

61 Dreher, A., ‘Does globalization affect growth? Evidence from a new index of globalization’, Applied Economics, 38:10 (2006), pp. 10911110 .

62 Zürn, ‘The politicization of world politics and its effects’, pp. 47–71; Zürn, M., Binder, M., and Ecker-Ehrhardt, M., ‘International authority and its politicization’, International Theory, 4:1 (2012), pp. 69106 .

63 Papke, L. E. and Wooldridge, J. M., ‘Econometric methods for fractional response variables with an application to 401(k) plan participation rates’, Journal of Applied Econometrics, 11:6 (1996), pp. 619632 .

64 Braithwaite and Drahos, Global Business Regulation; Drezner, All Politics Is Global; Simmons, ‘International politics of harmonization’, pp. 589–620; Uvin, ‘From local organizations to global governance’, p. 15.

66 Zürn, ‘The politicization of world politics and its effects’, p. 59.

67 Hooghe and Marks, ‘A postfunctionalist theory of European integration’, pp. 1–23; Zürn, ‘The politicization of world politics and its effects’, pp. 69–106.

69 Charnovitz, ‘Opening the WTO to non-governmental interests’, pp. 173–216.

70 Interview with Wendel Trio director at CAN, formerly Greenpeace trade campaign director.

71 Fischer, ‘COP-15 in Copenhagen’, pp. 11–17; Fischer and Green, ‘Understanding disenfranchisement’, pp. 65–84.

72 Charnovitz, ‘Opening the WTO to non-governmental interests’, pp. 173–216; Robertson, ‘Civil society and the WTO’, pp. 1119–34.

73 See also Hanegraaff, M. C., ‘Interest groups at transnational onferences: Goals, strategies, interactions and influence’, Global Governance, 21:4 (2015), pp. 599620 , for more in-depth studies concerning the relation between NSAs and negotiators during WTO-MCs and climate conferences.

74 Charnovitz, ‘Opening the WTO to non-governmental interests’, pp. 173–216; Robertson, ‘Civil society and the WTO’, pp. 1119–34; Steffeck, Kissling, and Nanz (eds), Civil Society Participation in European and Global Governance; Wilkinson, R., Hannah, E., and Scott, J., ‘The WTO in Bali: What MC9 means for the Doha development agenda and why it matters’, Third World Quarterly, 35:6 (2014), pp. 10321050 .

75 See, for example, Fischer, ‘COP-15 in Copenhagen’, pp. 11–17: Fischer and Green, ‘Understanding disenfranchisement’, pp. 65–84; Hanegraaff, ‘Transnational advocacy over time’, pp. 83–104.

76 Stevenson, H., ‘India and international norms of climate governance: a constructivist analysis of normative congruence building’, Review of International Studies, 37:3 (2011), pp. 9971019 .

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