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The Global Economic Order and Development

Alessandrini, Donatella and Okonjo, Jeremmy Odhiambo (2023) The Global Economic Order and Development. In: The Oxford Handbook of International Law and Development. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-286736-0. (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:103792)


This chapter focuses on how International Economic Law (IEL) and institutions have shaped and continue to shape the post/colonial relationship between the world economic order and “development,” a relationship which is neither fixed nor immutable but whose nexus IEL and institutions are able to sustain in powerful ways, thereby precluding different political economic imaginaries and arrangements. Our argument is that IEL (and in particular trade, investment and financial law, and regulation) contributes to this nexus through a combination of international agreements, hard and soft law, local and national norms, standards, market actors such as credit rating agencies, and digital technologies and practices, which are engaged in the ideological and performative reproduction of particular modes of economic organization. These legal and regulatory regimes are often fragmented and conflicting but sometimes converge to create powerful regulatory apparatuses ‘intended to discourage, if not outlaw, policy options lying outside the range of what is considered “normal.”’ Abstracting from this fragmentation — and acknowledging there are limits to periodization — we reflect on four broad phases when such convergence has taken place and identify common threads that run from the League of Nations to the Value Chain Development of current IEL and institutions. Whilst we highlight threads and continuities, the aim is not to stress inevitable repetition but to point to the potential for rupture from what these regimes constitute as “normal,” a potential which has always existed and continues to exist. Making IEL world-making functions visible is, we argue, a necessary step towards articulating demands for more desirable political economic arrangements.

Item Type: Book section
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > Kent Law School
Depositing User: Donatella Alessandrini
Date Deposited: 08 Nov 2023 08:08 UTC
Last Modified: 12 Nov 2023 21:17 UTC
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Alessandrini, Donatella.

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Okonjo, Jeremmy Odhiambo.

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