Chapter 1 Global governance in the twenty-first century: end of the Bretton Woods moment?
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The labels “crisis” and “turning point” are used freely to describe international politics. In the decade since the global financial crisis of 2008-09, and even more frequently in the past four years, arguments that the world is not at a turning point have become difficult to find. The debates have often been confusing, however, suggesting both fundamental and sudden ruptures as well as recent recognition of long-term structural changes. Reflecting on a century that began with the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations and is closing with a pandemic and the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, the effects of conflict, peacemaking, and economic turmoil on global order can certainly be identified. Long-term trends and trajectories, inflected by those episodes, have been equally influential: the dissolution of empires - from colonial to Soviet - and the proliferation of sovereign states; the integration of Europe and the rise of military and economic powers outside Europe; and a rapid growth in the institutions of regional and global governance.

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