Global Studies

Global Governance Beyond Neolberalism

Research Area

Global Economy
International Law
Regional Economy

Time Span

2022 – 2023



Aarhus University      


Hewlett Foundation

The last quarter century of war and economic crisis has revealed many of the limitations of international institutions, ending the era of liberal triumphalism which succeeded the collapse of the USSR in 1991. The period since 2008, characterized by acute economic crisis, the return of apparent great power rivalries, a threat of wider war between nuclear powers, is also accompanied by the historic acceleration of inflation and low growth globally. These developments, alongside a weakening of the liberal democratic order in general, suggest that the process of globalization itself – however illusory its promises for sustained economic dynamism once were – is also now being reversed.

What are the underlying causes of the contemporary breakdown of globalization, flagging growth of the world economy, and the rise in militarism, including the militarization of much of civil society? Do such developments in turn mean that the neoliberal paradigm which informed globalization is likewise undergoing a fundamental change, or that it is itself being superseded? If the latter, by what, and driven by which political forces, deciding among which alternatives? 


The present era of historic transformation and crisis raises questions about how nearly all extant international and national institutions, official and civil, will respond and attempt to resolve the many contradictions now besieging them. A semester-long seminar series, one component of a project studying the world beyond neoliberalism, will be a venue for discussions among analysts of recent and contemporary history. The seminars will address a wide range of topics: from the state of international law, economic history, political theory, geopolitics and the interstate balance of power, to transformations in media and the arts.


1.China in the World Economy – 17. February

Exploring the political and economic implications the normalization of Chinese GDP growth have for the PRC, the Pacific region, and the world economy, which has come to rely on China as the workshop of the world.

2.Strategies of US Foreign Policy – 24. February

Discussing US security and commercial imperatives, a long-term strategy informing US foreign policy and potential future implications.

New Media, Big Data, Civil Society – 15. March

Examining some of the recent political-economic debates on so-called technological feudalism, as well as qualitative changes in the lifeworld now taking place.

Global Economies, Regional Realities – 28. March

Globally oriented educated populations and the professional politicians representing them face the pauperized working class of the hinterlands across Europe, the US, Latin America and Asia. What is the economic basis of this division, how does it interact with the recent diplomatic and military developments…?

New Claims on Global Order  – 13. April

What could a neaoliberalist international political economy look like, and what role will international law play in it?  Will the US revert to a strategy based on more direct forms of coercion and domination, or will it cede limited ground to the rising powers it has designated as strategic rivals, to make way for a more or less peaceful transition to an epoch of true multipolarity, mediated by law?

International Law? – 20. April

What is the current state of international law? How international is it, and does it command the status of law, even partially, with a sovereign power capable of adjudication and enforcement? The panalists present their views on the conceptualization of international law and outline prospects for the legal institutions which aim to operate internationally.

Technocracy or Economic Democracy? – 5. May

Our panelists consider possible alternatives now taking shape: a globalized form of economic administration, incorporating a generally depoliticized population reduced to spectatorship, or a revival of popular democratic participation in economic affairs.

An Economic-Ecological Regime?  – 11. May

Discussing the question of democratic self-determination which accompanies possible technocratic fixes for environmental crises, and the implicit politics of any program which relies mainly on the judgment of experts and scientists.

European Neoliberalism – 24. May

The panelists examine the historical development of this influential school of economics, its political meaning, and evaluate its persistent effects on European Union institutions and policies.

Watch all recorded sessions here.

Project Participants

Hagen Schulz-Forberg

Associate Professor

 Academic Profile 

Joshua Rahtz


Academic Profile 

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