The result is gridlock, which manifests across areas via a number of common mechanisms. The rise of new powers representing a more diverse array of interests makes agreement more difficult. The problems themselves have also grown harder as global policy issues penetrate ever more deeply into core domestic concerns. Existing institutions, created for a different world, also lock-in pathological decision-making procedures and render the field ever more complex. All of these processes - in part a function of previous, successful efforts at cooperation - have led global cooperation to fail us even as we need it most.
Ranging over the main areas of global concern, from security to the global economy and the environment, this book examines these mechanisms of gridlock and pathways beyond them. It is written in a highly accessible way, making it relevant not only to students of politics and international relation but also to a wider general readership.