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Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

Governing Scales: Scaling Global Governance Workshop

10th November 2016, 09:00 to 13:00, Seminar Room, Institute of Advanced Study


In 1569 Gerardus Mercator created a projection of the globe that is still commonly used today. This map defined seas and the contours of the world, but its distortions of size and its depiction of an enlarged Europe and North America, are well known. His use and manipulation of scales shaped the way we see the world. In an era where there is an increasing plurality of actors participating in global governance, the fundamental position of the state in international law is being challenged and issues are transnational or trans-boundary, international legal and governance scholarship has to find new ways of understanding the world we live in. The way we use scales such as national, regional and international to label legal systems shapes our approaches to law and global governance.

This interdisciplinary seminar invites scholars from Law, International Relations and Geography, to interrogate the role of ‘scale’ in international legal and governance scholarship. The seminar will explore the utility of a scalar approach, what the different scales represent, and whether there are lessons to be learnt about norm transfer and the legitimisation of governance across different scales. The seminar will consider whether the way we measure, label and conceptualise scales influences our approaches to law and global governance. Engaging with ‘scale’ beyond disciplinary silos will further scholarly understanding of the impact of scale in global governance.

The seminar will take place on 9th November 2016, 9am – 5pm and 10th November 2016, 9am – 1pm in the Seminar Room, at the Institute of Advanced Study. It will explore the question of scale in global governance across three themes:

  1. Scales in Global Governance
  2. Transferability Across Scales
  3. Legitimacy Across Scales

Organised by Ruth Houghton, Dr Aoife O’Donoghue and Dr Maria Anna Corvaglia (Durham Law School), the seminar brings together researchers in the fields of law, politics, international relations and geography. Participants from the Faculty of Social Sciences and Health at Durham University will be joined by academics from across the UK and Europe, including Dr Otto Hospes (Wageningen, Netherlands), Dr Joshua Kirshner (University of York), Dr Ming-Sung Kuo (University of Warwick), Dr Andrew Kythreotis (Cardiff University) and Dr Samantha Velluti (University of Lincoln).

The seminar is open to all, but those wanting to attend or participate are asked to contact Ruth Houghton (Durham Law School) r.a.houghton@durham.ac.uk.

Contact r.a.houghton@durham.ac.uk. for more information about this event.