Global Institutional (In)Coherence and Sustainable Development Governance

 – Overview – 

This SSHRC-funded project is led by Steven Bernstein and Erin Hannah from King’s University College at Western University. It aims to identify and explain the problem of institutional and policy incoherence in global sustainable development governance, the repeated attempts to build macro-level coherence over the last 30 years, and their consequences for policies and institutional arrangements including among the United Nations and its major sustainable development initiatives such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), International Financial Institutions, and the WTO.

Kenneth W. Abbott and Steven Bernstein. 2015. “The High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development: Orchestration by Default and Design.” Global Policy.

Steven Bernstein. 2013. “Rio + 20: Sustainable Development in a Time of Multilateral Decline.” Global Environmental Politics 13 (4): 12-21.

Steven Bernstein and Erin Hannah. 2012. “The WTO and Institutional (In)Coherence in Global Economic Governance.” Oxford Handbook on the WTO, edited by Amrita Narlikar, Martin Daunton, and Robert M. Stern.  Oxford University Press, pp. 766-808.

Steven Bernstein. 2013. “The Role and Place of a High-Level Political Forum in Strengthening the Global Institutional Framework for Sustainable Development.” Commissioned by UN-DESA.  Available at: