Archive for the ‘Guest Blogger’ Category

A Global Peoples Parliament

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on May 17th, 2007

Over the past two decades, the nations of the world have moved closer to democratic governance. With the demise of the Soviet Union, the idea of democratization has become irrepressible. While the emphasis has been of democratic nationalism, a soft, but vibrant voice is now heard proclaiming that, while the idea of democratic nationhood is good, the creation of a democratic world order is even better. Is the idea of a global democratic world order attractive? Is it feasible?

Last spring, Widener University’s School of Law hosted, under the creative guidance of Professor Andrew Strauss, an international conference, Envisioning a More Democratic Global System. The Conference, co-sponsored by the American Society of International Law and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, critically examined the idea of a Global Peoples Parliament to ascertain and articulate the voice of the peoples of the world. This parliament is not designed, at least for the present, to replace existing national governments, but initially as a unique global institution to deliberate over, and then articulate, the reflective opinion of the world’s peoples about critical problems we face as the people of the Earth. In addition to Professor Strauss, the participants included Richard Falk, David Kennedy, Thomas Franck, Gregory Fox, Robert Johansen, Leila Sadat. With this array of talent–both accomplished scholars and experienced government officials–the conference was a smash hit. Professor Strauss then graciously created a video of conference highlights and a virtually unedited version of the wrap-up session, which itself illustrated perhaps how A Global Peoples Parliament might work. Anyone interested in democracy, or the evolving international world order, or both should take a look at this video.

ECA has invited Professor Strauss to post a commentary on this vitally important topic. Here’s hoping he’ll accept the invitation.