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Description - The Oxford Handbook of International Organizations by Jacob Katz Cogan

Virtually every important question of public policy today involves an international organization. From trade to intellectual property to health policy and beyond, governments interact with international organizations in almost everything they do. Increasingly, individual citizens are directly affected by the work of international organizations. Aimed at academics, students, practitioners, and lawyers, this book gives a comprehensive overview of the world of international organizations today. It emphasizes both the practical aspects of their organization and operation, and the conceptual issues that arise at the junctures between nation-states and international authority, and between law and politics. While the focus is on inter-governmental organizations, the book also encompasses non-governmental organizations and public policy networks. With essays by the leading scholars and practitioners, the book first considers the main international organizations and the kinds of problems they address. This includes chapters on the organizations that relate to trade, humanitarian aid, peace operations, and more, as well as chapters on the history of international organizations. The book then looks at the constituent parts and internal functioning of international organizations. This addresses the internal management of the organization, and includes chapters on the distribution of decision-making power within the organizations, the structure of their assemblies, the role of Secretaries-General and other heads, budgets and finance, and other elements of complex bureaucracies at the international level. This book is essential reading for scholars, practitioners, and students alike.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780199672202
ISBN-10: 0199672202
Format: Hardback
(253mm x 182mm x 60mm)
Pages: 1344
Imprint: Oxford University Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Book Reviews - The Oxford Handbook of International Organizations by Jacob Katz Cogan

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Book Review: Oxford Handbook of International Organizations by Jacob Katz Cogan - Reviewed by (17 Feb 2017)

INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATONS: A MULTIDISCIPLINARY ANALYSIS AND OVERVIEW

An appreciation by Phillip Taylor MBE and Elizabeth Taylor of Richmond Green Chambers

Like many another title in the distinguished Oxford Handbook series from the Oxford University Press, this particular Handbook offers academics, scholars and lawyers an astoundingly diverse and extensive range of contemporary research on, in this case, international organizations.

The book’s three expert editors head a team of no less than sixty-six international contributors comprising academics and practitioners, who together present a veritable treasure trove of up-to-the-minute analysis and commentary on ‘IOs’, including the legal, political and practical issues with which they are concerned. This is the arena in which law and politics meet, against the background of the inevitable tensions generated by the often uneasy relationships between international authority and the interests of nation states.

As the editors point out, international organizations are involved in virtually every important question pertaining to public policy, including trade, security, health, intellectual property, international finance, the response to international terrorism, criminal justice, the environment and much more. Individuals as well as countries are therefore affected by the policies and the machinery of international organizations.

While the focus of the book is on intergovernmental organizations, an analytical eye is cast over non-governmental organisations (NGOs) -- and in turn, their influence on IOs. The private sector and the various networks are also examined. We are reminded too, of the history of intergovernmental organisations and their relentless proliferation since the end of World War II, during which time, ‘few have died’. As the editors remark, ‘the sheer growth in numbers has caused some analysts to worry about institutional overload.’ It will inevitably occur to some that the age of global governance has well and truly come upon us. In this handbook of over 1,200 pages is a wealth of information and insight into the structure, function and ethos of any number of international organizations, from the United Nations to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Trade Organisation (WTO), as well as smaller, but nonetheless influential bodies.

International lawyers especially, will find this overview of the various perspectives on the workings of international organizations immensely useful, especially when the focus turns to the speculative comments on the amount and degree of authority that they may -- or may not – wield on the world stage. The many contributors to this title have certainly opened avenues for further comment and research into what has become a crucially important and complex area of study.

The publication date is cited as at 2016.


Author Biography - Jacob Katz Cogan

Jacob Katz Cogan is Professor of Law at the University of Cincinnati College of Law. He previously worked in the Office of the Legal Adviser of the U.S. Department of State, including as attorney-adviser to the Department's Bureau of International Organization Affairs. Ian Hurd is Associate Professor of Political Science at Northwestern University. Ian Johnstone is Professor of International Law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. He previously worked in the Executive Office of the Secretary General of the United Nations, as well as the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and Office of Legal Affairs.