Global governance and the emergence of a post-neoliberal order?

Submission deadline: 1 April 2024

Publication of the special issue in Socio-Economic Review: early 2025


The Covid-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine and the backdrop of environmental crises have shattered past orthodoxies on the desirable models of international economic integration, and the institutional arrangements underpinning them. Political leaders have led the charge, calling for ‘strategic autonomy’ in key economic areas (Emmanuel Macron), ‘friendshoring’ of supply chains by rebasing production networks in allied countries (Janet Yellen), and ‘strategic competition’ with China over the future of the international order (Joe Biden). Meanwhile, in December 2022, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution, supported by 123 countries in the Global South and opposed by the Global North, calling for a ‘New International Economic Order’—echoing the concerted movement by developing countries in the 1970s to pursue global institutional change.

As these examples suggest, the international order finds itself in an interregnum: the institutionalized neoliberalism of previous decades has been increasingly discredited yet remains thoroughly embedded in multilateral agreements, international organizations and dominant norms, while the nascent ‘post-neoliberal’ order is emerging by mixing-and-matching institutional building blocks of the past with new policy ideas and paradigms. The complex and contingent trajectories of institutional change—especially at the global level—come as no surprise to students of political economy, but the present juncture offers a rare opportunity to study such change in the making.

This special issue calls for contributions that scrutinize attempted changes to global governance arrangements and how these affirm or challenge the underlying international order. The agents driving such change include states, multinational companies, the financial sector, civil society, and epistemic communities competing over the nature and characteristics of the emerging order. These dynamics of contestation and the resources—material as well as normative—that are being poured into the reform processes offer ample analytical opportunity for generating novel theoretical and empirical arguments on global-level institutional change. The current juncture also offers leeway for comparisons: between the strategies and priorities of different countries or social actors, and between present and past attempts at global-level institutional change. Article submissions from across the social sciences and cognate disciplines like history, geography and law are welcome. Submissions on or from the Global South are particularly encouraged.  

The call is open to all topics that fit the general scope of the special issue and the aims of the Socio-Economic Review, but potential themes can include the following:

  • Divergent transformations in global governance arrangements (including multilateral organizations, trade agreements and international law)
  • Global supply chain reorganization and private sector strategies
  • The interplay between private finance and global governance arrangements
  • The role of the Global South in driving institutional change
  • Institutions of South-South cooperation as alternative models
  • Whether/how climate change is fostering innovations in global governance
  • Transnational labor and social movement mobilization
  • Normative struggles over global policy design



Papers will be reviewed following the journal’s double-blinded review process and criteria. Submissions should be directed through the online submission system: Please note the length of the text, including references and footnotes, must not exceed 10,000 words, exclusive of tables and figures. For full submissions guidelines and the editorial statement, please visit the SER website at

For pre-submission enquiries and any further information concerning this special issue, please contact the Guest Editors:  Alexandros Kentikelenis (, Quinn Slobodian (, and Christy Thornton ( In the interest of including authors from the Global South, disciplines that do not commonly appear in SER (e.g., history or law) and early career scholars, the Guest Editors will oversee a pre-submission feedback process intended to strengthen submissions from these groups. Interested authors are welcome to submit one-page abstracts for potential submissions by Friday 14 July by email to the Guest Editors. Subject to interest and availability, Guest Editors may then invite selected authors to an online paper development workshop in November or December 2023. Enquiries and/or participation in the workshop should not be interpreted as commitment to publish. All submissions will be treated equally and will undergo rigorous peer review.