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The Global Commonwealth of Citizens:
Toward Cosmopolitan Democracy
Daniele Archibugi

Paperback | 2015 | $30.95 | £25.95 | ISBN: 9780691166537
Hardcover | 2008 | $55.00 | £45.95 | ISBN: 9780691134901
320 pp. | 6 x 9 1/4
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The Global Commonwealth of Citizens critically examines the prospects for cosmopolitan democracy as a viable and humane response to the challenges of globalization. Arising after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the decisive affirmation of Western-style democracy, cosmopolitan democracy envisions a world politics in which democratic participation by citizens is not constrained by national borders, and where democracy spreads through dialogue and incentives, not coercion and war. This is an incisive and thought-provoking book by one of the world's leading proponents of cosmopolitan democracy.

Daniele Archibugi looks at all aspects of cosmopolitan democracy in theory and practice. Is democracy beyond nation-states feasible? Is it possible to inform global governance with democratic norms and values, and if so, how? Archibugi carefully answers questions like these and forcefully responds to skeptics and critics. He argues that democracy can be extended to the global political arena by strengthening and reforming existing international organizations and creating new ones, and he calls for dramatic changes in the foreign policies of nations to make them compatible with global public interests. Archibugi advocates giving voice to new global players such as social movements, cultural communities, and minorities. He proposes building institutional channels across borders to address common problems, and encourages democratic governance at the local, national, regional, and global levels.

The Global Commonwealth of Citizens is an accessible introduction to the subject that will be of interest to students and scholars in political science, international relations, international law, and human rights.

Daniele Archibugi is professor of innovation, governance, and public policy at the University of London, Birkbeck College, and a research director at the Italian National Research Council in Rome. His books include Debating Cosmopolitics and The Globalizing Learning Economy.


"Archibugi has been a leading proponent of new forms of cosmopolitan political community in which citizens have opportunities to participate directly in making global choices. In this book, he provides a grand summation of a decade of thinking about cosmopolitan democracy. . . . Archibugi's claim that democracy must be reinvented for a global era leads to extended discussions of the ways in which transnational democracy might operate. It is easy for such discussions to become abstract statements of political dreams, but Archibugi, to his credit, rolls up his sleeves and grapples with the specific ways in which citizen groups can get directly involved."--Foreign Affairs

"In applying cosmopolitan logic to concrete issues such as humanitarian intervention, institutional reform at the UN, and democratic transitions, Archibugi has provided an indispensable contribution."--Choice

"This work is a much awaited book length exposition of the project of global democracy from one of its leading proponents and represents the culmination of two decades of reflection on this topic. This shows in the richness, thoughtfulness and depth of the arguments the author puts forward in his contribution to a debate that is fundamental for contemporary politics."--Tiziana Torresi, Global Justice Network

"Archibugi offers a morally appealing vision of cosmopolitan democracy, and thus anyone who has yet to give up on modernity's humanitarian impulses should read this book."--William E. Scheuerman, Perspectives on Politics

"Archibugi outlines his cosmopolitan project in a simple and readable style. Anyone interested in problems of global governance will find the book stimulating and instructive."--Faruk Yalvac, Spectrum

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Table of Contents:

Tables and Figures ix
Acronyms and Abbreviations xi
Preface and Ac know ledg ments xiii
Chapter 1: Introduction: A Queen for the World? 1

Chapter 2: The Conception of Democracy 17
Chapter 3: Democracy and the Global System 53
Chapter 4: The Architecture of Cosmopolitan Democracy 85
Chapter 5: Critical Debate on Cosmopolitan Democracy 123

Chapter 6: The Central Importance of the United Nations 153
Chapter 7: Cosmopolitanism and Humanitarian Intervention 184
Chapter 8: Can Democracy Be Exported? 206
Chapter 9: A Cosmopolitan Perspective on the Self-Determination of Peoples 226
Chapter 10: Is a Multi lingual Democracy Possible? 249
Chapter 11: Conclusions: The Prospects for Cosmopolitan Democracy 274
Index 289

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