Stewart M. Patrick

The Internationalist

Patrick assesses the future of world order, state sovereignty, and multilateral cooperation.

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Showing posts for "G8 and G20"

The G20’s Growth Promise: Can They Deliver?

by Stewart M. Patrick

The G20’s Growth Promise: Can They Deliver?

–Sydney, Australia

Last weekend’s meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors in Sydney racked up some notable achievements. The most important was an agreement by the assembled governments to increase global growth by two percentage points over the next five years and to submit detailed national action plans to bring this about. At the same time, the gathering reminded observers how difficult it is to hold G20 members’ feet to the fire to ensure the timely fulfillment of their commitments. Read more »

Obama and Syria: Insights from the President’s G20 Press Conference

by Stewart M. Patrick
U.S. President Barack Obama departs a news conference at the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg September 6, 2013. Obama said on Friday that most leaders of the G20 countries agree that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is responsible for using poison gas against civilians as the U.S. leader tried to rally support at home and abroad for a military strike (Kevin Lamarque/Courtesy Reuters).

In his revealing press conference closing out the G20 summit, President Obama provided the clearest summary yet of his thinking on Syria. Perhaps the most significant points were the following: Read more »

Syria Shows Why the G20 Needs a Foreign Ministers Track

by Stewart M. Patrick
Russia's President Vladimir Putin leaves a meeting next to Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov during the the G20 Summit in Los Cabos in June 2012 (Victor Ruiz, Courtesy Reuters).

Ever since President George W. Bush invited leaders of the Group of Twenty (G20) to Washington five years ago, the annual summit agenda has been dominated by finance ministers and central bank governors. For a while, that made sense. After all, the rationale for the G20 was to rescue the world from the depths of the financial crisis and get the global recovery up and running. Afraid of diluting the body’s effectiveness, Barack Obama and his foreign counterparts resisted expanding the group’s remit beyond traditional economic issues like monetary and fiscal policy, financial regulation, trade liberalization, and development. Read more »

Keeping Cool in St. Petersburg: Criteria for a Successful G20 Summit

by Stewart M. Patrick
A banner of the G20 Summit hangs at a ship station on the bank of the Neva river in St. Petersburg, September 1, 2013. G20 leaders will meet in St. Petersburg on September 5 and 6, according to the official website (Alexander Demianchuk/Courtesy Reuters).

Call it the summit of “compartmentalizing”. When President Obama and fellow leaders convene in St. Petersburg, their toughest challenge will be to focus on economic recovery while ignoring the elephant in the room: namely, the rift between host Russia and the United States on a possible U.S. military strike to punish Syrian use of chemical weapons. Setting aside diplomatic acrimony—and personal animosity between Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin—will not be easy. But it is imperative to ensure coordinated multilateral support for global growth and meet past G20 pledges. Read more »

The Group of Eight Summit: One Pillar of Today’s “G-x World”

by Stewart M. Patrick
The Lough Erne Golf Resort, where the G8 summit will be held next week, is seen in County Fermanagh June 10, 2013 (Cathal McNaughton/ Courtesy Reuters). The Lough Erne Golf Resort, where the G8 summit will be held next week, is seen in County Fermanagh June 10, 2013 (Cathal McNaughton/ Courtesy Reuters).

It has become conventional to assert, following Eurasia Group President Ian Bremmer, that we live in a “G-Zero World.” The international system lacks global leadership. Rather than concerting efforts in common endeavors, we are told, every nation is out for itself. In fact, the “G-Zero” label is misleading—a barren caricature of the rich landscape of international cooperation that actually does exist. What is distinctive about our era is not the absence of multilateralism, but its astonishing diversity and flexibility. When it comes to collective action, states are no longer focusing solely or even primarily on universal, treaty-based institutions like the United Nations—or even on a single apex forum like the Group of Twenty (G20). Instead, governments have adopted an ad hoc approach, coalescing in a bewildering array of issue-specific and sometimes transient bodies depending on their situational interests, shared values, and relevant capabilities. Welcome to the “G-x” world. Read more »

The G20: Prospects and Challenges for Global Governance

by Stewart M. Patrick
President Vladimir Putin’s presidency of the G20 was a subject of debate during CFR’s discussion of the G20’s “Prospects and Challenges for Global Governance.” It is also likely that the agenda set during the Russian presidency of the G20 will shape its future, at least in the near term. (Grigory Dukor/Courtesy Reuters)

Yesterday I got to debate the role of the Group of Twenty (G20) in global governance with some heavyweight thinkers at CFR’s New York offices. The on-the-record discussion, moderated by Anne-Marie Slaughter of Princeton University, included Ian Bremmer, the head of the Eurasia Group and author of the bestselling Every Nation for Itself, and Nicolas Berggruen, author of the new book Intelligent Governance for the 21st Century: A Middle Way between East and West. The wide-ranging conversation explored whether the G20 was up to the task of serving as the premier steering group for the world economy—much less addressing other items on the global agenda. Read more »

Is the International Community Growing Apart?

by Stewart M. Patrick
The Spasskaya Tower of the Kremlin pictured after a heavy snowfall in central Moscow on January 21, 2013 (Sergei Karpukhin/Courtesy Reuters).

Coauthored with Isabella Bennett, program coordinator in the International Institutions and Global Governance program.

Last month, IIGG and the Moscow-based Institute of Contemporary Development convened the second regional meeting of the Council of Councils—a network of twenty-four policy institutions based in established and emerging states—to exchange practical ideas and solutions regarding daunting transnational challenges. The conversations highlighted growing areas of systemic global risk and thinning solidarity within the so-called international community. These trends threaten to undermine multilateral cooperation in stabilizing the global economy and preserving international peace and security. Read more »

Time for a Coalition of Capable, Like-Minded Democracies?

by Stewart M. Patrick
U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd R) speaks to fellow heads of state from Japan, Italy, Canada, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom at a working session at the G8 Summit at Camp David, on May 19, 2012. Ash Jain proposes including these democracies (minus semi-authoritarian G8 member Russia) in a new group, along with the EU, South Korea, and Australia to forge a concert of democracies (Philippe Wojazer/Courtesy Reuters).

Could a coalition of democracies help the United States address some of its more daunting global challenges?  In a new CFR working paper, Like-Minded and Capable Democracies: A New Framework for Advancing a Liberal World Order Ash Jain argues that the answer is yes. The title may be cumbersome, but Jain’s inclusion of “like-minded” and “capable” is critical. Democratic solidarity is possible only if the United States judiciously includes democracies that truly share U.S. preferences and have tangible resources to leverage for collective action. Failure to think soberly about these two criteria has doomed previous proposals to harness democracy  to U.S. strategy. Read more »

A New Year’s Agenda for Russia’s G20 Chairmanship

by Stewart M. Patrick
St Petersburg, Russia will be the site of the next G20 meeting Fireworks light up the sky over the Neva River and Peter and Pawel Fortress in St. Petersburg, the site of the next G20 meeting. (Alexander Demianchuk/ Courtesy Reuters)

The new year is a time of hope. As 2013 dawns, optimists yearn for a period of sustained global economic growth after five years of recession, turbulence, and sluggish recovery. Achieving this scenario will require close policy coordination among governments of the world’s major economies. This places a heavy burden on the Russian Federation, which on December 1 assumed the rotating chairmanship of the Group of Twenty (G20). Read more »

A New Agenda for the G20: Addressing Fragile States

by Stewart M. Patrick
People walk along Red Square, with Saint Basil's Cathedral in the background, in central Moscow where the G20 summit will be held later this year. (Denis Sinyakov/Courtesy Reuters)

— Moscow

Having recently assumed the rotating chair of the Group of Twenty (G20), the Russian government is now soliciting input on the agenda for its September 2013 meeting in St. Petersburg. Yesterday I contributed to these deliberations as a member of the “Think20”network—a consortium of independent experts from around the world. My own advice to the Russian sherpa, Ksenia Yudaeva, was that Russia should transform the G20’s nascent development agenda to address the pressing challenge of fragile states. Read more »