The G20 @ 10: Benefits, limitations and the future of global club governance in turbulent times


Ort / Datum
Bonn, 23.10.2018 bis 24.10.2018


German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE), Chatham House, Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS)

The G20 will meet at the end of 2018 for their annual summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In contrast to its early years, the G20 today is not dealing with another financial crisis which threatens a global recession, but with underlying economic problems and a set of political crises on various levels. A fundamental unease with economic globalisation and international cooperation can be observed in some major G20 countries which is fueled by increasing socio‐economic inequalities.

At the same time, the G20 has evolved in terms of the depth of the underlying process and the breadth of topics that are on the agenda. The number of G20 stakeholders has been growing. Also, rather than emphasizing exclusivity of the club, inclusivity (or outreach) is deemed relevant for legitimacy and it has become a tradition for the annual presidencies to interact with the so-called engagement groups (B20, C20, L20, S20, W20 or T20 – including the T20Africa Standing Group) and invite additional countries as guests.

The G20’s agenda has been growing over the years beyond core economic issues such as financial stability and economic growth to incorporate issues such as sustainable development, climate change, digitalization, women’s empowerment and migration. As a result, expectations towards the club have shifted from economic crisis management to the role of a facilitator for structural change on the global and domestic level. As the G20 has evolved into an increasingly wide‐ranging club governance structure, critics have raised numerous concerns with regard to effectiveness, legitimacy and its relation with multilateral organisations.

Against a challenging global context this conference had drawn on novel empirical research to inform policy discussions about the future agendas, policies and institutional structures of club governance formats such as the G20, G7, BRICS or MIKTA. The conference aimed at bringing together researchers representing different regions of the world, disciplines and methodological approaches. The conference combined academically focused panels with keynotes and roundtable discussions involving high‐ranking policymakers and representatives from business and civil society.

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