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Global Economic Governance

The Global Economic Governance programme examines the ways in which rising powers affect the international economic, financial and trade regimes. Research in this programme examines both existing and emerging institutional arrangements, and is centered around a seminar series, reading group, and annual conference (details for 2016-17 academic year to be announced).


The global financial crisis of 2007/2008 set in motion a period of transformations in global economic governance: established actors—like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund—now face competition, while newly-minted South-led organizations—like the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the New Development Bank and the Contingency Reserve Arrangement—seek to leave their mark on the field. At the same time, the proliferation of bilateral trade agreements, in particular mega-regional trade arrangements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership in Asia, have the potential to rapidly transform the structure and functioning of the global trading system.

The Global Economic Governance research project interrogates how rising powers seek to reshape the structure of this policy field, and how they interact with each other and other state or non-state actors. Members of the research cluster explore these issues with reference to five key themes:

  1. Development and infrastructure financing: Research areas include South-led development and infrastructure financing institutions (like the NDB and AIIB), the activities of rising powers vis-à-vis the governance and operations of the World Bank, and the interactions between rising powers and regional development banks.
  2. Trade: Research focuses on the impact of rising powers in the governance of the WTO, the causes of their bilateral and regional trade agreements, the consequences of these arrangements for the structure and functioning of the global trading system, and the role of rising powers in foreign direct investment flows and global value chains.
  3. International economic stability: Research areas include how rising powers have tried to reshape the IMF and assert greater voice in its operations (both in relation to country lending and the organization’s policy ideas, for example on capital account management), the BRICS Contingent Reserve Arrangement, and the dysfunctionalities and legacies of the Chiang Mai Initiative.
  4. Global private regulation of standards: Research areas include how rising powers interact with private non-market regulatory bodies (like the International Organization for Standardization for product regulation and the International Accounting Standards Board for financial reporting), and whether and how they have tried to influence their operations or create alternatives.
  5. Industrial policy: The East Asian development experience has informed and shaped the industrial policy choices of a number of rising powers. Research in this theme will investigate how rising powers have attempted to reshape the terms of international policy debates about industrial development. 



Director of Research

Alex Kentikelenis 200x200Alexander Kentikelenis is Director of Research in Global Economic Governance at the Centre for Rising Powers. He is also a Research Fellow in Politics at Oxford University, where he is a fellow of Trinity College. His academic interests lie in the fields of international political economy, economic and organisational sociology, and international development. He is currently focusing on processes of deliberation and decision-making in the international political economy, and is particularly interested in questions of governance and accountability of intergovernmental organizations, and have generated a range of new databases to explore these issues in depth. Alexander’s research has appeared in leading academic journals, including The Lancet, the Review of International Political Economy and World Development, and has received attention by various media outlets, including the New York Times, Le Monde, El País, Reuters, Associated Press, the BBC, and Al Jazeera. In addition, it has formed the basis of parliamentary questions in the House of Lords and the European Parliament. More information and links to publications and data can be found on his website (


Senior Research Fellows

Vinod Aggarwal 200x200Vinod K. Aggarwal is Travers Family Senior Faculty Fellow and Professor in the Travers Department of Political Science, Affiliated Professor at the Haas School of Business, and Director of the Berkeley Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Study Center (BASC) at the University of California at Berkeley. He is also Editor-in-Chief of the journal Business and Politics, and Chair of the U.S. Consortium of APEC Study Centers. He also serves as Chief Economist for Frost & Sulllivan, a global consulting firm. He has held fellowships from the Brookings Institution, Rockefeller Foundation, Council on Foreign Relations, East-West Center, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and was a Japan Foundation Abe Fellow. He is also an elected lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations and founding member of the U.S. Asia Pacific Council. Dr. Aggarwal consults regularly with multinational corporations on strategy, trade policy, and international negotiations, governments, and international organizations. In 1997, he won the Cheit Outstanding Teaching Award at the Haas School of Business for PhD teaching; in 2003 he was first runner up for the Cheit Award for MBA teaching and won first place for the MBA program in 2005. He is the author or editor of 21 books. His latest book is Responding to the Rise of China. He has also published over 100 articles and book chapters on the politics of trade and finance. Dr. Aggarwal received his B.A. from the University of Michigan and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. Born in Seattle, Washington, he speaks five languages.

Danilo Igliori 200x200Danilo Igliori is Professor Doutor in the department of economics at University of Sao Paulo and Chairman of DataZAP real estate intelligence, holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge where he lectured during 2004-2011 and was the Adam Smith Fellow in Political Economy at Pembroke College during 2009-2011. Dr Igliori has extended experience in the private sector, including BTG Pactual, Vale and Unibanco. He has also acted as economic consultant for the private sector, government departments (in Brazil and in the UK) and international agencies (World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank). During 2008-2009, Dr Igliori was the director of projects and industrial studies at MCM Consultores Associados (an economic consultancy). His research interests include environmental and resource economics, industrial clusters, urban economics and real estate, innovation, creative industries, and economic development in the Brazilian Amazon. He is co-editor of Spatial Economic Analysis and Fellow of the Regional Studies Association. He has published in leading academic journals, contributed to a number of edited volumes and published two books.

Faizel Ismail 200x200

Faizel Ismail has a PhD in Politics from the University of Manchester, UK; an MPhil in Development Studies from IDS, Sussex, and; BA and LLB Degrees from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal (PMB) in South Africa. He is currently an Adjunct Professor at the University of Cape Town in the School of Economics. He has served as the Ambassador Permanent Representative of South Africa to the WTO (2010-2014). He has served as the Chair of the WTO Committee on Trade and Development negotiating group (CTDSS) for two years (2004-2006), the Chair of the WTO Committee on Trade and Development (CTD) for one year (2006/7) and the Chair of the WTO Committee on Trade, Debt and Finance (WGTDF) for two years (2012-2014). He is the author of two books on the WTO: Mainstreaming Development in the WTO. Developing Countries in the Doha Round (2007) and Reforming the World Trade Organization. Developing Countries in the Doha Round (2009). The latter book has been translated into Chinese (2011). He has published over 50 articles, chapters and working papers in international journals and books on economic development and trade and development issues. He is an associate editor of the Journal of World Trade and a member of the Practitioner’s Advisory Board of the Journal of Global Policy (LSE).

Dan Kim 200x200Dan Kim, PhD, is an International Trade Analyst for the U.S. International Trade Commission, where he provides expertise and analysis on trade, supply chain, and intellectual property issues. He specializes in information and communication technology industries and advanced manufacturing. Previously, Dr. Kim was a Senior Economist for the Korea International Trade Association (KITA), where he held an advisory role in economic and policy matters for senior executives in South Korea and Washington D.C. Prior to that, Dr. Kim was a Volkswagen Foundation Post-doctoral research associate at the University of Cambridge, where he taught graduate and undergraduate level courses on international economics and politics. He was the founding editor of the Centre for Rising Powers Working Paper Series. He holds M.Phil and PhD degrees in International Political Economy from the University of Cambridge (Pembroke College), as a Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholar. His publications can be found in The Oxford Handbook of the World Trade Organization, Foreign Affairs, Journal of Economic Policy Reform, among others.


Research Fellows


Bernhard Reinsberg joined the University of Cambridge in 2016 from the University of Zurich, where he received his Ph.D. in Political Science. At Zurich, he was also an assistant at the Chair for Political Economy and Development Policy. In this capacity, he taught courses on multilateral organizations, foreign aid, and macroeconomics. Prior to joining the University of Zurich, Bernhard Reinsberg completed a M.A. in Comparative and International Studies at ETH Zurich. He holds B.A. degrees in Political Science (Freie Universität Berlin) and Mathematics (University in Hagen). His research activities broadly cover the political economy of international organizations, notably the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Currently, he is examining the politics of conditionality at the International Monetary Fund at the University of Cambridge. Prior to that, he was principal member in a research project on the rise of multi-bi aid at the University of Zurich, in which he investigated the increasing popularity of earmarked contributions to international development organizations by donor countries. He is particularly interested in the views of rising powers on earmarked contributions. His research also examines the systemic changes in the multilateral development system, such as the trend toward informal governance arrangements and the inclusion of emerging actors in governance venues.

stubbs200Thomas Stubbs is a Lecturer in Quantitative Sociology at the School of Social Sciences, University of Waikato, and a Research Associate in Political Economy at the Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge. Thomas’s research engages in three overlapping themes: determinants and consequences of IMF programs; political economy of East Africa; and urban poverty and development. His most recent work examines the political economy of foreign aid allocation and, in particular, the role of the IMF in signalling policy credibility to donors. He has also written on rising powers in East Africa, examining the interplay of democracy, ethnicity, and the military in Kenya. Currently, he is working on a book that examines the effects of IMF conditionalities on social policies and outcomes, applying quantitative and archival research methods to a novel dataset of IMF conditionality. Thomas’s research has been funded by Cambridge Political Economy Society Trust, Cambridge Commonwealth Trust, and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga. It has appeared in leading academic journals, including Social Science & Medicine and World Development. More information can be found on his website (


Graduate Research Fellows

cheng200Han Cheng is a PhD candidate in Human Geography, 2016-19 (Cambridge International Scholar, Trinity Hall). He is interested in the politics of development and critical theory. He has been a Yale Global Justice Fellow (2014), German Humboldt Chancellor Fellow (2015), Global Governance Futures Fellow (2012), and Northeast Asia Economic Forum Young Leader (2010). Previously, Han worked as an international policy consultant to business, government and civil society organisations on environment and development issues. Prior to this, he reported for The Guardian from East Asia. Han obtained his B.A. from Renmin University of China in Beijing.

Sebastian Haug 200x200

Sebastian Haug is a PhD candidate in Geography at the University of Cambridge (Christ’s College) where his research focuses on the positions and roles of rising powers in global development governance. He is particularly interested in Turkey and Mexico as actors and spaces between the ‘global North’ and the ‘global South’. Prior to moving to Cambridge, Sebastian worked with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in China and then in Mexico where he was in charge of UNDP’s South-South cooperation and strategic partnerships portfolios. He also collaborated with development policy and research institutions in France, Germany and Uganda and has conducted seminars or presented research at universities in China, Ethiopia, Israel, Mexico, Turkey and the UK. A former Mercator Fellow on International Affairs, Sebastian studied political science and international relations in Paris, Berlin and St Andrews and holds a Vice-Chancellor’s Award from the University of Cambridge as well as a Master of Science in Global Governance and Diplomacy from the University of Oxford. 

koehler200Nicolas Köhler is a PhD candidate at the Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of Cambridge. His research focuses on the political economy of international trade. He is particularly interested how the rise of new powers affects the structure and functioning of the global trading system. In his PhD thesis, he examines the role of political and economic factors, both domestic and international, in the conclusion of India’s preferential trade agreements. Nicolas holds an MPhil in International Relations from the University of Cambridge and is a graduate research assistant at the Centre for Rising Powers. He studied politics, economics, and law for his undergraduate degree at the University of Münster, Germany, and McGill University, Canada. Prior to coming to Cambridge, he worked at the European Commission in Brussels, at the German Bundestag in Berlin, and at GIZ in Malawi.  




Babb, S. and A. Kentikelenis. In press. "International Financial Institutions as Agents of Neoliberalism," in The SAGE Handbook of Neoliberalism, edited by D. Cahill, M. Cooper, and M. Konings. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications.

Ismail, F., 2016. “20 years of Democratic South Africa’s role in the Multilateral Trading System” in 20 years” in Adebajo and Virk (eds.) Post-Apartheid South Africa’s Foreign Policy after Two Decades (Centre for Conflict Resolution (CCR), Cape Town, South Africa) (forthcoming).

Ismail, F. 2016. “The Changing Global Trade Architecture: Implications for Sub-Saharan Africa”, Trade Hot Topics, The Commonwealth, Issue 131.

Kentikelenis, A., T. Stubbs, and L. King. 2016. "IMF Conditionality and Development Policy Space, 1985-2014," Review of International Political Economy. 

Neilson, D., & Stubbs, T. 2016. Competition states in the neoliberal era: Towards third generation regulation theory. Competition & Change. In press.

Reinsberg, B. 2016. The implications of multi-bi financing on multilateral agencies: The example of the World Bank. In: Mahn, T., Negre, M., & Klingebiel, S. Fragmentation versus Pluralism? The Future of Development Cooperation Revisited. Palgrave McMillan (forthcoming).

Stubbs, T., Kentikelenis, A., & King, L. 2016. Catalyzing aid? The IMF and donor behavior in aid allocation. World Development, 78, 511-528.



Kim, D. ‘Britain's energy cooperation with emerging economies.’ in Challenges of European External Energy Governance with Emerging Powers, Knodt, Piefer, and Mueller (Eds), 2015. Ashgate.

Reinsberg, B., Michaelowa, K., & Eichenauer, V. 2015. The rise of multi-bi aid and the proliferation of trust funds. In: Arvin, M.B., and Lew, B. (eds.). Handbook on the Economics of Foreign Aid. Edward Elgar.

Stubbs, T. 2015. Ethnopolitics and the military in Kenya. In D. Zirker (Ed.), Forging Military Identity in Culturally Pluralistic Societies: Quasi-Ethnicity. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, pp.69-88.



Aggarwal, V.K., & Evenett, S.J. 2014. Do WTO rules preclude industrial policy? Evidence from the global economic crisis. Business and Politics, 16(4), 481-509. Part of Special Issue on Industrial Policy, edited by Vinod K. Aggarwal and Simon J. Evenett.

Aggarwal, V.K., & Newland, Sara. 2014. Responding to China’s Rise: US and EU Strategies. New York: Springer.

Stubbs, T., King, L., & Stuckler, D. 2014. Economic growth, financial crisis, and property rights: Observer bias in perception-based measures. International Review of Applied Economics, 28(3), 401-418. 



Ismail, F., and Vickers, B. 2013. “Reflections on a new Democratic South Africa’s role in the Multilateral Trading System” in James Scott and Rorden Wilkinson (eds.), Trade, Poverty, Development: Getting beyond the WTO’s Doha Deadlock, (London: Routledge, 2013).

Kim, D. & Narlikar, A. 2013. ‘Unfair Trade: potential negative consequences of consumer movements.’ Foreign Affairs.



Aggarwal, V.K., & Govella, K. 2012. Linking Trade and Security: Evolving Institutions and Strategies in Asia, Europe, and the United States. New York: Springer.

Ismail, F., 2012. “Developing Country Coalitions in the WTO Doha Round: The NAMA 11”, in Mehta, P., Kaushik, A.,and Kaukab, R. Reflections from the Frontline. Developing Country Negotiators in the WTO (CUTS International, and Academic Foundation, New Delhi, 2012).

Ismail, F. 2012."Reflections on a new Democratic South Africa's role in the Multilateral Trading System", in Journal of Global Policy, Vol. 3, Issue 3, September 2012

Ismail, F. 2012. “Narratives and Myths in the WTO Doha Round. The Way Forward?”, in Political and Economic Weekly, Vol. XLVII No. 31 (August 4th 2012)

Ismail, F. 2012. “Is the Doha Round Dead? What is the Way Forward?” in World Economics, Vol.13. No. 3 (July-September 2012), pp.1-26

Kim, D., Narlikar A., & Coskeran, H. 2012 ‘Trade in Manufactures and Agriculture Products: A Dangerous Link?’, in The Oxford Handbook on the World Trade Organization. Amrita Narlikar, Martin Dauton, and Robert Stern (Editors), pp. 343-369. Oxford University Press: Oxford. 



Aggarwal, V.K., & Govella, K. 2011. Responding to a Resurgent Russia: Russian Policy and Responses from the EU and US. New York: Springer.

Ismail, F. 2011. Reforming the World Trade Organization. Developing Countries in the Doha Round (Published in Chinese) (WTO Centre, Shanghai, China)

Ismail, F., 2011. “China’s Rise – Opportunities and Challenges for Africa”, in, Melendez-Ortiz, R., Bellman, C., and Cheng, S., (ed) A Decade in the WTO. Implications for China and Global Trade Governance (International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development, Geneva, Switzerland, 2011, e-book)

Ismail, F., and Vickers, B. 2011. “Towards fair and inclusive decision-making in WTO negotiations”, in (ed) Birkbeck, C.D., Making Global Trade Governance Work for Development, Perspectives and Priorities from Developing Countries (Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, 2011)

Ismail, F. 2011. “Re-discovering the Role of Developing Countries in the GATT”, in (ed) Lee, Y.S., Horlick, G.N., Choi, W.M., Broude, T., Law and Development Perspectives on International Trade Law (The Law and Development Institute, Cambridge University Press, 2011, New York, USA).

Ismail, F. 2011. “Developing Countries Create Momentum for Change in the WTO! A response to Wilkinson, R. (2011) ‘Measuring the WTO’s Performance: An Alternative Account”, in Journal of Global Policy, Vol. 2, No. 1, pp. 43–52.

Neilson, D., & Stubbs, T. 2011. Relative surplus population and uneven development in the neoliberal era: Theory and empirical application. Capital & Class, 35(3), 435-453.




TitleStart DateLocation
CRP Lecture: Vinod K. Aggarwal (UC Berkeley) on The Rise of Mega-FTAs in the Pacific & the Atlantic 2015/05/15 11:00:00 GMT+1 Law Faculty Building, LG17
China Political Economy Discussion Group:"Outward Foreign Direct Investment and the Political Economy of China’s Development" with Dr Jan Knoerich (KCL) 2015/03/03 14:00:00 GMT ARB S1
China Political Economy Discussion Group: "China’s Rule of Mandates: Governing with Priorities rather than Laws" with Dr Mayling Birney (LSE) 2015/02/17 14:00:00 GMT Room 11, 3rd Floor of the History Faculty
CRP Lecture: Barry Eichengreen on China and the International Monetary and Financial System: The Challenge of Renminbi Internationalization 2014/11/18 16:00:00 GMT Alison Richard Building, SG1
'The System Worked' with Daniel Drezner (Fletcher School) 2014/06/05 16:00:00 GMT+1 Alison Richard Building, Room 138
CRP Research Seminar: 'A (more) outward-looking Brazil: growth challenges ahead' by Danilo Igliori (University of Sao Paolo) 2013/06/12 17:00:00 GMT+1 Alison Richard Building, Room 138
Launch Event for International Affairs Special Issue: Negotiating the Rise of New Powers 2013/05/22 00:00:00 GMT+1 Chatham House, London
CRP Research Seminar with Professor Miles Kahler (UCSD), 'Emerging Economies and Global Governance: Conservatives or Reformers?'  2013/03/13 17:00:00 GMT Alison Richard Building, Room S3
CRP Research Seminar with Dr. David Blagden (CRP, Cambridge), 'The Political Causes and Strategic Consequences of Global Economic Engagement' 2013/02/01 12:00:00 GMT Alison Richard Building, Room 138
CRP Lecture: Jim O'Neill on how we get out of the post-2008 malaise 2012/11/08 17:00:00 GMT Mill Lane Lecture Room 1, 8 Mill Lane
CRP Research Seminar: Emma Mawdsley and Dan Kim on 'Competing Models of Development Aid. The Role of Rising Powers' 2012/11/02 12:00:00 GMT Alison Richard Building, Room 138
CRP Workshop: Negotiating the Rise of New Powers 2012/09/07 00:00:00 GMT+1 Chatham House, London
CRP Roundtable: Bargaining with the BRICs 2011/11/01 17:00:00 GMT Seminar Room A, 17 Mill Lane

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