Columbia International Affairs Online: Working Papers

CIAO DATE: 03/2009

Handel, Hierarchien und Kooperation in der Globalisierung

Robert Kappel, Juliane Brach

February 2009

German Institute of Global and Area Studies


Trade, Hierarchy, and Cooperation in the Age of Globalization

In the course of globalization, the intensity of global interactions between nations, firms, and civil society actors has increased significantly and has led to the creation of transnational norm-building networks. These have an essential, but little-known influence on all aspects of life (business and work relationships, environment, security, law, trust, etc.). Their influence expands to nation-state and market relationships that are also subject to constant reorganization. Transnational networks are leading to a global civil society that is more and more independent of the nation-state. With this relative erosion of state domination, the standard economic perspective, which primarily focused on the nation-state, is eroding as well.

In this paper we review economic approaches dealing with different forms of hierarchy and cooperation in the age of globalization. And yet, we focus on the discourse on valuecreation chains as an essential element of transnational networks and a potential catalyst for technological progress and economic development in developing and transition countries. Moreover, we outline fruitful combinations of different economic approaches that in future may help to achieve a better understanding of global civil society autonomy and transnational networks.