Should International Organizations Include Beneficiaries in Decision-making? Arguments for Mediated Inclusion

Chris Tenove

Abstract

There are longstanding calls for international organizations (IOs) to be more inclusive of the voices and interests of people whose lives they affect. There is nevertheless widespread disagreement among practitioners and political theorists over who ought to be included in IO decision-making and by what means. This paper focuses on the inclusion of IOs’ ‘intended beneficiaries,’ both in principle and practice. It argues that IOs’ intended beneficiaries have particularly strong normative claims for inclusion because IOs can affect their vital interests and their political agency. It then examines how these claims to inclusion might be feasibly addressed. The paper proposes a model of inclusion via representation and communication, or ‘mediated inclusion.’ An examination of existing practices in global governance reveals significant opportunities for the mediated inclusion of IOs’ intended beneficiaries, as well as pervasive obstacles. The paper concludes that the inclusion of intended beneficiaries by IOs is both appropriate and feasible.


Keywords

global governance; international organizations; democratic deficit; inclusion; affected interests

Full Text:

pp. 44-65 PDF

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21248/gjn.10.2.147

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