The EU's Role in Global Governance: the legal dimension – University of Copenhagen

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21 January 2013

The EU's Role in Global Governance: the legal dimension

Asst. Prof. Bart Van Vooren is the first editor of a new book entitled "The EU's Role in Global Governance: the legal dimension" out with Oxford University Press on 17 January 2013. It is the result of a conference with the same title organized by CECS on 13-14 October 2011.


  • The first comprehensive legal study of the role of the European Union in global governance
  • Examines the potential of the European Union to export its legal framework to the broader sphere of international governance
  • Covers all major areas of EU external policy, including security, trade, financial regulation, the environment, and social governance

For years the European Union has been looked on as a potential model for cosmopolitan governance, and enjoyed considerable influence on the global stage. The EU has a uniquely strong and legally binding mission statement to pursue international relations on a multilateral basis, founded on the progressive development of international law. The political vision was for the EU to export its values of the rule of law and sophisticated governance mechanisms to the international sphere.

Globalization and the financial crisis have starkly illustrated the limits of this vision, and the EU's dependence on global forces partially beyond the control of traditional provinces of law. This book takes stock of the EU's role in global governance. It asks: to what extent can and does the EU shape and influence the on-going re-ordering of legal processes, principles, and institutions of global governance, in line with its optimistic mission statement?

With this ambitious remit it covers the legal-institutional and substantive aspects of global security, trade, environmental, financial, and social governance. Across these topics 23 contributors have taken the central question of the extent of the EU's influence on global governance, providing a broad view across the key areas as well as a detailed analysis of each. Through comparison and direct engagement with each other, the different chapters provide a distinctive contribution to legal scholarship on global governance, from a European perspective.