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Handbook of the International Political Economy of Governance

Handbook of the International Political Economy of Governance

Handbooks of Research on International Political Economy series

Edited by Anthony Payne and Nicola Phillips

Since the 1990s many of the assumptions that anchored the study of governance in international political economy (IPE) have been shaken loose. Reflecting on the intriguing and important processes of change that have occurred, and are occurring, Professors Anthony Payne and Nicola Phillips bring together the best research currently being undertaken in the field. They explore the complex ways that the global political economy is presently being governed, and indeed misgoverned.

Chapter 5: Flexible 'G groups' and network governance in an era of uncertainty and experimentation

Andrew Baker and Brendan Carey

Subjects: economics and finance, political economy, politics and public policy, international politics, political economy, regulation and governance


In 1998 a small group of advanced countries - the Group of Seven (G7) - determined the resolution and response to a financial crisis emanating from emerging economies (the so-called Asian financial crisis). Ten years later, in an almost exact reversal of that earlier pattern, a mixed group of advanced and emerging economies - the Group of Twenty (G20) - presided over the response to a financial crisis that began in the world's core North Atlantic financial centres. This apparent positional swap was a potent symbol of the way the governance of the international political economy had progressively changed during the first decade of the twenty-first century. The rise of the G20 and its displacement of the G7 (later G8) as the pre-eminent global economic governance forum provides a vivid illustration of how the status, standing and preponderance of advanced core countries has been challenged by a number of rising powers. At the Pittsburgh G20 leaders' summit of September 2009, a formal announcement was made that the G20 had moved from being a low-key network of finance ministry and central bank officials to a headline-grabbing leaders-level network: 'the world's premier forum for global economic cooperation' (G20 2009). The term 'G groups' refers to a regular rhythm of meetings amongst groups of countries either at leaders' level (summits) or through a series of interactions between finance ministry and central bank personnel.

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