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Walter Mattli and Jack Seddon

In this chapter, we focus on “cooptation” as a particularly salient global governance arrangement connecting governmental and non-governmental actors. States and inter-governmental organizations (IGOs) have found irresistible cause in the globalizing economy to coopt transnational governance actors (NGOs, private standard setters, and so forth) to manage the challenges of economic interdependence. The strategy of cooptation offers a means to augment global governing capacities. Yet, as Philip Selznick first showed, cooptation can have unintended consequences, shifting the locus of power and authority within a governance architecture. Following a brief literature review, we place this fertile insight in a novel analytical framework to explain when and how power moves in the much vaunted shifts from global economic “government” to “transnational governance.”