What International Organizations Do, and Why They Do It

Paul Cammack

Abstract

International organizations work to develop production and exchange (and productivity and competitiveness) on a global scale, in ways that vary from time to time in accordance with the state of the world market as a whole and from place to place in accordance with the situation of individual states. In recent decades the focus on productivity and competitiveness on a world-wide scale has intensified, prompting a conjunctural focus on responses to the ‘global financial crisis’, and a deeper strategic focus on ‘structural reforms’. The latter focus on extending global value chains, promoting industrial policy, pursuing the formalization of labour, reforming labour markets and social protection, and lowering barriers to trade, in ways that reflect the ‘completion of the world market’ in terms of exchange. Against this background the World Bank’s 2015 World Development Report, Mind, Society and Behavior, exemplifies the principal objective of current global policy – to induce people around the world to conform in thought and behaviour to the requirements of globally competitive capitalism. It is seen as the logical culmination and the cutting edge of twenty-five years of increasingly focused and coordinated work on the part of the international institutions charged with governing the global economy.

Key Words: International Organizations, the World Market, WDR 2015, Poverty and Development

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Neoliberal Nightmares

Japhy Wilson

Abstract

Neoliberalism died in the financial crisis of 2008. But it has risen from the grave. This uncanny persistence has coincided with an increased interest in gothic themes in the realms of popular culture and critical political economy. This paper presents a psychoanalytic diagnosis of this unsettling scenario. Gothic monsters are identified as symptoms of the Real of Capital as an abstract form of domination. Neoliberalism is then theorised as a form of obsessional neurosis, which evolves through its failed attempts to conceal the traumatic dimensions of the Real of Capital. This argument is illustrated through the strange case of the celebrity development economist Jeffrey Sachs, and his peculiar transformation from Dr Shock into Mr Aid. I conclude with some reflections on the nightmarish phenomenon of zombie neoliberalism.

Key Words: Neoliberal ideology, Spectres of Capital, Economics of Anxiety, Washington consensus, Financial Crisis of 2008

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Hegemony in the Making: TÜSİAD’s Hegemonic Role in the Context of Turkey’s EU Membership Process

Özge Yaka

Abstract

This article aims at a critical contribution to neo-Gramscian political economy literature on agency of transnational capitalist class in shaping the global socio-economic order through the empirical analysis of hegemonic agency of TÜSİAD (Turkish Industry and Business Association) in formation of EU membership as a hegemonic project in Turkey in the first half of the 2000s. Drawing Poulantzas close to Gramsci and using his distinction between the power bloc and the dominated classes/groups, it introduces the notion of double moments of hegemony, which marks a comprehensive and multi-dimensional understanding of hegemony as a process involving two interrelated moments – within the power bloc and over a class-divided society. This conceptual contribution helps us to depict the political agency of transnational capitalist class in the making of the neoliberal mode of regulation, beyond its economic role in shaping the regime of accumulation. This conception not only provides an alternative against the conventional notion of hegemony within the neo-Gramscian IPE as limited with the processes, alliances, compromises and struggles within the power bloc but also contributes to the broader field of Gramscian studies in terms of analysing the strategic-agential dimension in the making of hegemony, focusing on the (material and discursive) means and mechanisms in which hegemony is produced and maintained. A Gramscian analysis of TÜSİAD as a hegemonic agent, a political party and a collective organic intellectual builds on an empirical research on those means and mechanisms utilized in shaping the EU membership as a hegemonic project.

Keywords: TÜSİAD, Turkey-EU relations, hegemony, hegemonic project, neo-Gramscian IPE.

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