Editor’s Introduction

Faruk Yalvaç

 We are very happy that the second issue of SPECTRUM Journal of Glob-al Studies is now published. Our first issue has been very well received and, with the support of the international relations community, Spectrum is on its way to becoming one of the important journals in our field.

The articles in the second issue of our journal are based on the theme of our 2009 METU International Relations Conference: Patterns of Change in the Global System. We have chosen this theme for our conference because we feel that international relations theory has failed giving due emphasis to explaining change, and this is one issue where the traditional IR theory is the weakest. Indeed, the main emphasis of traditional and positivist interna-tional relations theory has been on order and stability rather than change; reproduction of the international system, rather than its transformation. Post-positivist IR theory has been more interested in change but, as wit-nessed in different forms of constructivism and post positivism, change is conceptualized more as an idealistic and conceptual issue rather than a ma-terial one dealing with concrete social relations.

All these different approaches to change have been discussed during the conference this year. However, we are sorry that we could not publish all the papers presented. We also gave space to papers presented previously for consideration for publication. Some papers fitting to the orientation of the journal have been sent to referees and after the referee process is fina-lized, we are intending to publish them in our future issues.

This issue includes articles by Hendrik Spruyt, Ken Booth, Daniele Archi-bugi, Thomas Faist and Hugo Radice, with an interview with Cynthia Weber. All papers deal with different aspects of global socio-political change. In his article, Spruyt deals with different sovereignty arrangements and uses in-complete contracting theory to explain why some governance mechanisms are more successful in the international system than the others. Ken Booth argues for a change in our collective consciousness for a more human world. His emancipatory realism is designed to deal with what he calls the Great Reckoning- the general condition of the global society facing different forms of human suffering. Daniele Archibugi’s normative political theory of cosmo-politan democracy argues for the application of democratic norms and prin-ciples to the global political system and views cosmopolitan democracy as the route to a more peaceful world. Thomas Faist deals with the transna-tional as the significant locus of change and emphasizes the transnational character of boundaries and social space. He defines transnational space in terms of dynamic processes and sees boundaries not as fixed but as changing entities. Finally Hugo Radice deals with current economic crisis and sees it as a crisis of the ideology and practice of neoliberalism. He argues that the source of an alternative world order lies in capitalist production relations where the relation between capital and the wage labour is defined.

In the last section, there is an interview with Cynthia Weber on her “‘I am an American’: Video Portraits of Unsafe US citizens” project. Although she primarily talks about US politics, Weber describes on a more general level the contradiction between being a citizen and being a human that lies at the heart of our ideals of citizenship and national identity.

I would like to thank to all the contributors for making this special issue possible. I should mention that our aim is not restricting the journal only to papers submitted in our conferences. Papers, discussion pieces and book reviews are welcome for consideration for publication in the coming issues. I want to encourage all IR scholars to submit papers to our Winter issue which will not be based on a particular theme and will try to cover different aspects of global politics.

Editor in Chief


Department of International Relations

Middle East Technical University