Anonymous. WikiLeaks. The Syrian Electronic Army. Edward Snowden. Bitcoin. The Arab Spring. Five years ago, these terms were meaningless to the vast majority of people in the world. Today, they and many like them dominate the news and keep policymakers, security experts, and military and intelligence officials up at night. These groups and individuals are enabled and empowered by digital technology to confound and provoke the state in a way not possible before the Internet revolution. Theyare representative of a wide range of 21st century global actors and a new form of 21st century power: disruptive power. In Disruptive Power, Taylor Owen provides a sweeping look at the way that digital technologies are shaking up the workings of the institutions that have traditionally controlled international affairs: humanitarianism, diplomacy, war, journalism, activism, and finance. The traditional nation state system and the subsequent multinational system were founded on and have long functioned through a concentration of power in the state - through the military, currency controls, foreign policy, the rule of law, and so on. In this book, Owen argues that in every aspect of international affairs, the digitally enabled are changing the way the world works and disrupting the institutions that once held a monopoly on power. Each chapter of Owen's book looks at a different aspect of international affairs, profiling the disruptive innovators and demonstrating how they are challenging existing power structures for good and ill. Owen considers what constitutes successful online international action, what sorts of technologies are being used as well as what these technologies might look like a decade from now, and what new institutions will be needed to moderate the new power structures and ensure accountability. With cutting edge analysis of the fast-changing relationship between the declining state and increasingly powerful non-state actors, Disruptive Power is the essential road map for navigating a networked world.
Over the course of American political history, political elites and organizations have often updated their political communications strategies in order to achieve longstanding political communication goals in more efficient or effective ways. But why do successful innovations occur when they do, and what motivates political actors to make choices about how to innovate their communication tactics? Covering over 300 years of political communication innovations, Ben Epstein shows how this process of change happens and why. To do this, Epstein, following an interdisciplinary approach, proposes a new model called "the political communication cycle" that accounts for the technological, behavioral, and political factors that lead to revolutionary political communication changes over time. These changes (at least the successful ones) have been far from gradual, as long periods of relatively stable political communication activities have been disrupted by brief periods of dramatic and permanent transformation. These transformations are driven by political actors and organizations, and tend to follow predictable patterns. Epstein moves beyond the technological determinism that characterizes communication history scholarship and the medium-specific focus of much political communication work. The book identifies the political communication revolutions that have, in the United States, led to four, relatively stable political communication orders over history: the elite, mass, broadcast, and (the current) information orders. It identifies and tests three phases of each revolutionary cycle, ultimately sketching possible paths for the future. The Only Constant is Change offers readers and scholars a model and vocabulary to compare political communication changes across time and between different types of political organizations. This provides greater understanding of where we are currently in the recurring political communication cycle, and where we might be headed.
by Professor of International Relations and Executive Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Tim Dunne
Author: Professor of International Relations and Executive Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Tim Dunne
Publisher: Oxford University Press
The Globalization of International Society re-examines the development of today's society of sovereign states, drawing on a wealth of new scholarship to challenge the landmark account presented in Bull and Watson's classic work, The Expansion of International Society (OUP, 1984). For Bull and Watson, international society originated in Europe, and expanded as successive waves of new states were integrated into a rule-governed order. International society, on their view, was thus a European cultural artefact - a claim that is at odds with recent scholarship in history, politics, and related fields of research. Bringing together leading scholars from Asia, Australia, Europe, and the United States, this book provides an alternative account: it draws out the diversity of polities that existed at around c1500; it shows how interacting identities, political orders, and economic forces were intensifying within and across regions; it details the tangled dynamics that helped to globalize the European conception of a pluralist international society, through patterns of warfare and between East and West. The Globalization of International Society examines the institutional contours of contemporary international society, with its unique blend of universal sovereignty and global law, and its forms of hierarchy that coexist with commitments to international human rights. The book explores the multiple forms of contestation that challenge international society today: contests over the limits of sovereignty in relation to cosmopolitan conceptions of responsibility, disputes over global governance, concerns about persistent economic, racial, and gender-based patterns of disadvantage, and lastly the threat to the established order opened up by the disruptive power of digital communications.
From home mortgages to i-phones, basic elements of our daily lives depend on international economic markets. The astonishing complexity of these exchanges may seem ungoverned. Yet the global economy remains deeply bound by rules. Far from the staid world of treaties and state-to-state diplomacy, economic governance increasingly relies on a different class of international market regulation - soft law - comprised of voluntary standards, best practices, and recommended guidance created by a motley assortment of international organizations. Voluntary Disruptions argues that international soft law is deeply political, shaping the winners and losers of globalization. Some observers focus on soft law's potential to solve problems and coordinate market participants. Voluntary Disruptions widens the discussion, shifting attention to the ways soft law provides new political resources to some groups while not to others and alters the sites of contestation and the actors who participate in them. Highlighting two mechanisms - legitimacy claims and arena expansion - the book explains how soft law, typically viewed as limited by its voluntary nature, disrupts and transforms the politics of economic governance. Using financial regulation as its laboratory, Voluntary Disruptions explains the remarkable pre-crisis alignment of US and European approaches to governing markets, the rise and prominence of transnational industry associations in the 1990s and 2000s, and the ambivalence of US reforms towards international market cooperation in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Rethinking scholarly and policy approaches to international soft law, this volume answers enduring and pressing questions about global finance, International Relations, and power. Transformations in Governance is a major new academic book series from Oxford University Press. It is designed to accommodate the impressive growth of research in comparative politics, international relations, public policy, federalism, and environmental and urban studies concerned with the dispersion of authority from central states to supranational institutions, subnational governments, and public-private networks. It brings together work that advances our understanding of the organization, causes, and consequences of multilevel and complex governance. The series is selective, containing annually a small number of books of exceptionally high quality by leading and emerging scholars. The series is edited by Liesbet Hooghe and Gary Marks of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and Walter Mattli of the University of Oxford.
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