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The 20th century was influenced profoundly by the experience of two world wars. It was also characterized, however, by the attempt to replace armed conflict with non-violent conflict management. As the United Nations Charter preamble declares: The “People of the United Nations are determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.” International law and international institutions have made considerable progress toward this goal, but the world is still a long way from effectively banning major organized violence between or within states.
Current governance theories are grappling with the reality of today's complex international relations. What lessons do these theories hold for overcoming violent conflict? What do theories about global governance tell us about international public authority? Is such an authority desirable at all? What would the ideal international society look like from the perspective of global governance theory? What is the role of law, authority, and international institutions in realizing the ideal?
The aim of this book is to offer an interdisciplinary debate on these normative responses to the problem of war: law, authority, governance, and constitution.