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Course, academic year 2023/2024
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Global Governance: The US and International Organizations - JTM248
Title: Global Governance: The US and International Organizations
Czech title: Global Governance: The US and International Organizations
Guaranteed by: Department of North American Studies (23-KAS)
Faculty: Faculty of Social Sciences
Actual: from 2023
Semester: summer
E-Credits: 6
Examination process: summer s.:
Hours per week, examination: summer s.:1/1, Ex [HT]
Capacity: 24 / unknown (24)
Min. number of students: 1
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Teaching methods: full-time
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: PhDr. Jan Hornát, Ph.D.
Teacher(s): PhDr. Jan Hornát, Ph.D.
Class: Courses for incoming students
Despite the claims of emerging multipolarity, the United States is still the world's hegemon. For this reason, its relations to and positions vis-a-vis any international institution are pivotal for the effectiveness and functionality of the given institution. Reluctance of the United States to cooperate on the international level may ultimately hinder any attempts at collective security and perspectives of global governance. The political and economic clout of the US is thus significant enough to have major influence in any international institution and organization (albeit this clout is in relative decline) - therefore, in order to comprehend the workings and architecture of international institutions, which have been designed in large part by the US itself, it is important to understand the US positions and relations with these institutions. The course will firstly discuss the theoretical questions of why states cooperate through international institutions? what are the processes of decision-making in international institutions? what are the setbacks of international cooperation and how do major IR theories interpret international cooperation? In the second bloc, the course will examine particular cases of US influence and positions in international institutions, its current challenges and potential for future cooperation.
Last update: Lochmanová Sára, Bc. (31.01.2024)
Aim of the course
The goal of the course is to introduce students to various IR perspectives on inter-state cooperation, examine the logics of cooperation and point out potential gains and losses when states cooperate. The theoretical discussion will serve as a necessary interpretative framework when looking at US engagement in and design of international institutions.
Last update: Lochmanová Sára, Bc. (31.01.2024)
Course completion requirements

1. Students will be required to attend classes regularly, read assigned texts and be active in discussions - this activity will constitute 20 points of the final grade.

2. Midterm paper: each student will prepare a 1200 - 1500 word essay on a topic related to global governance using AI. Students must come up with a prompt and submit it to an AI model of their choice. They will then critically evaluate the model's answer to the prompt, examining its factual validity, logical coherence and overall relevance. The prompt and AI-generated text is not part of the word count. This activity will constitute 30 points of the final grade and will be due on 5 April 2024.

Examples of prompts:

What reforms does the United Nations Security Council need to overcome its legitimacy and effectiveness crisis? 

Why does the United States often disagree with the United Nations Human Rights Council?

3. The final test will constitute 50 points of the final grade. The test will focus on concepts and topics discussed in class and will be based on mandatory readings.


100 - 91 points: A

90 - 81 points: B

80 - 71 points: C

70 - 61 points: D

60 - 50 points: E

less than 50 points: F (fail)


More in SMĚRNICE S_SO_002: Organizace zkouškových termínů, kontrol studia a užívání klasifikace A–F na FSV UK.


If student fails to meet deadline of midterm paper, each day of late submission mean -2 points off final grade.


Paper submission:

Students will submit papers through the Turnitin system:

Class ID: 42475590

Enrollment key: Jinonice1


Class ethics
(A) Any use of quoted texts in briefing papers must be acknowledged. Such use must meet the following conditions:

1.       the beginning and end of the quoted passage must be shown with quotation marks

2.       when quoting from periodicals or books, the name(s) of author(s), book or article titles, the year of publication, and page from which the passage is quoted must all be stated in footnotes or endnotes;

3.       internet sourcing must include a full web address where the text can be found as well as the date the web page was visited by the author.

(B) In case the use of any texts other than those written by the author is established without proper acknowledgement as defined in (A), the paper will be deemed plagiarized and handed over to the Disciplinary Commission of the Faculty of Social Sciences.

Last update: Hornát Jan, PhDr., Ph.D. (22.02.2024)

Via Syllabus.

Last update: Lochmanová Sára, Bc. (31.01.2024)
Teaching methods

Lecture and discussion with students

Last update: Hornát Jan, PhDr., Ph.D. (29.01.2024)

Course schedule (2024)

1.       Course introduction and requirements (22.2.2024)


Bloc I: Theory

2.       Theorizing international cooperation and international organizations – realist, liberal institutionalist and constructivist perspectives (29.2.2024)


  • Murphy, Craig N., "The Last Two Centuries of Global Governance", Global Governance 21 (2), 2015: 189–96.


  • Weiss, Thomas G. and Rorden Wilkinson, "Rethinking Global Governance? Complexity, Authority, Power, Change", International Studies Quarterly 58, 2014: 207-215.
  • Karns, Margaret P. and Karen A. Mingst, International organizations: the politics and processes of global governance (Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2004). Chapter 2 – “The Theoretical Foundations of Global Governance”.
  • Abbot, Kenneth W. and Duncan Snidal, “Why States Act through Formal International Organizations”, The Journal of Conflict Resolution 42 (1), 1998: 3-32.

3.       Expectations and output – questions of the legitimacy of international organizations (7.3.2024)


  • Hooghe, Liesbet, Lenz, Tobias and Marks, Gary, "Contested world order: The delegitimation of international governance", Review of International Organizations 14 (4), 2019: 731–743.


  • Dahl, Robert A., “Can international organizations be democratic? A skeptic’s view” in Ian Shapiro and Casiano Hacker-Cordón, Democracy’s Edges (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999).
  • Steffek, Jens, “The output legitimacy of international organizations and the global public interest”, International Theory 7 (2), 2015: 263-293.
  • Hurd, Ian, "Legitimacy, Power, and the Symbolic Life of the UN Security Council", Global Governance 8 (1), 2002: 35-51.
  • Hurd, Ian, "Legitimacy and contestation in global governance: Revisiting the folk theory of international institutions", Review of International Organizations 14 (4), 2019: 717–729.

4.       The principal-agent problem and the socialization effect of international organizations (14.3.2024)


  • Gheciu, Alexandra, "Security Institutions as Agents of Socialization? NATO and the 'New Europe'", International Organization 59 (4), 2005: 973-1012.


  • Kent, Ann, “China's International Socialization: The Role of International Organizations”, Global Governance 8 (3), 2002: 343-364.
  • Graham, Erin, “International organizations as collective agents: Fragmentation and the limits of principal control at the World Health Organization”, European Journal of International Relations 20 (2), 2014: 366-390.


Bloc II: The US Government and International Organizations

5.       Executive agreements and US Presidential powers in foreign policy (21.3.2024)


  • Zoellick, Robert, “Congress and the making of US foreign policy”, Survival 41 (4), 1999: 20-41.


  • Krutz, Glen S., and Jeffrey S. Peake, Treaty Politics and the Rise of Executive Agreements: International Commitments in a System of Shared Powers (Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, 2009). Chapter 1 – “Treaties and Executive Agreements: A History”.

6.     Dean's Holiday - No Class (28.3.2024)

7.     Class cancelled (4.4.2024)

8.     "Trump problems": Withdrawals and US approaches to multilateralism (11.4.2024)


  • Stokes, Doug, “Trump, American hegemony and the future of the liberal international order”, International Affairs 94 (1), 2018: 133–150.


  • von Borzyskowski, Inken and Vabulas, Felicity, "Hello, goodbye: When do states withdraw from international organizations?" Review of International Organizations 14 (2), 2019: 335–366.
  • Ikenberry, John G., “State Power and the Institutional Bargain: America's Ambivalent Economic and Security Multilateralism” in Foot, Rosemary, S. Neil MacFarlane, and Michael Mastanduno, eds. US Hegemony and International Organizations: The United States and Multilateral Institutions (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003).
  • Reisman, Michael W., “The United States and international institutions”, Survival 41 (4), 1999: 62-80.


Bloc III: US Power and Influence in International Organizations

9.       The idea of collective security - The Security Council and US power (18.4.2024)


  • Lättilä, Ville and Aleksi Ylönen, "United Nations Security Council Reform Revisited: A Proposal", Diplomacy & Statecraft 30 (1), 2019: 164-186.


  • Miller, Lynn H., “The Idea and the Reality of Collective Security”, Global Governance 5 (3), 1999: 303-332.
  • Krisch, Nico, “The Security Council and the Great Powers” in Lowe Vaughan etl (eds.). The United Nations Security Council And War: The Evolution Of Thought And Practice Since 1945 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008).
  • Weiss, Thomas G., “The illusion of UN Security Council reform”, Washington Quarterly 26 (4), 2003: 147-161.

10.    The (ir)relevance of NATO after the Cold War – Changing US perspectives (25.4.2024)


  • Marten, Kimberly, "Reconsidering NATO Expansion: a Counterfactual Analysis of Russia and the West in the 1990s", European Journal of International Security 3 (2), 2018: 135–61.


  • Layne, Christopher, “US Hegemony and the Perpetuation of NATO”, Journal of Strategic Studies 23 (3), 2000: 59-91.
  • Lanoszka, Alexander, "Thank goodness for NATO enlargement", International Politics 57 (3), 2020: 451–470.
  • Goldgeier, James M., “NATO expansion: The anatomy of a decision”, The Washington Quarterly 21 (1), 1998: 83-102.

 11.    US and international tribunals and courts (2.5.2024)


  • Birdsall, Andrea, “The ‘Monster That We Need to Slay’? Global Governance, the United States, and the International Criminal Court”, Global Governance 16 (4), 2010, 451-469.


  • Paulus, Andreas L., “From Neglect to Defiance? The United States and International Adjudication”, European Journal of International Law 15 (4), 2004: 783–812.

12.    The role of the US in international financial institutions (9.5.2024)


  • Woods, Ngaire, “The United States and the International Financial Institutions: Power and Influence Within the World Bank and the IMF” in Foot, Rosemary, S. Neil MacFarlane, and Michael Mastanduno (eds.), US Hegemony and International Organizations: The United States and Multilateral Institutions (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003).


  • Vreeland, James Raymond, The International Monetary Fund: Politics of Conditional Lending, New York: Routledge, 2007, Chapters 2 and 6 – “Who controls the IMF?” and “Reform the IMF?”
  • Wade, Robert Hunter, “US hegemony and the World Bank: the fight over people and ideas”, Review of International Political Economy 9 (2), 2002, 215-243.

13.    Maritime law: the US and UNCLOS (16.5.2024)


  • Smith, Leland Holbrook, “To accede or not to accede: An analysis of the current US position related to the United Nations law of the sea”, Marine Policy 83, 2017: 184-193.


  • Hudzik, Elizabeth M., “A Treaty on Thin Ice: Debunking the Arguments against U.S. Ratification of the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea in a Time of Global Climate Crisis”, Washington University Global Studies Law Review 9 (2), 2010: 353-370.


NOTE: All texts available in this syllabus are for study purposes of this course only. They are protected by copyright and must not be further distributed.


Last update: Hornát Jan, PhDr., Ph.D. (22.02.2024)
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