What is global governance?

Evolving concept

Global governance can be understood as a framework of institutions, rules, norms, and procedures that facilitate collective action and co-operation among countries and other actors.

It encompasses a wide range of issues, including economic development, trade, human rights, environmental protection, and peace and security. The objective is to address global challenges that transcend national borders and require collective solutions.

The concept of global governance is constantly evolving, as new challenges emerge and new actors become involved in the global system.

Examples of global governance

  • The United Nations (UN) system: Comprises a range of specialised agencies, programmes, and funds that work on issues such as health, education, climate change, and peace and security.

Recommended reports and analyses

Governance of nuclear weapons (2022)

Governance of nuclear weapons (2022)

Development of new, more lethal nuclear weapons suggest that a new arms race is underway.

Open overview
Governing our Climate Future (2021)

Governing our Climate Future (2021)

The Climate Governance Commission’s interim report.

Open report
Governance models in history (2017)

Governance models in history (2017)

Magnus Jiborn, Head of Research at the Global Challenges Foundation, on the historic perspective.

Open paper

Further reading

Additional reading material can be found in our library. Find plenty of ideas and proposals to discuss when it comes to global governance. Search for “governance”.

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