Inequality is becoming an urgent issue of world politics at the end of the twentieth century. Globalization is not only exacerbating the gap between rich and poor in the world, but is also further dividing those states and peoples that have political power and influence from those without.
While the powerful shape more ‘global’ rules and norms about investment, military security, and environmental and social policy, the less powerful are becoming ‘rule‐takers’, often of rules or norms that they cannot or will not enforce. The consequences for world politics are profound.
The evidence presented in this book suggests that globalization is creating sharper, more urgent problems for states and international institutions to deal with. Yet at the same time, investigations into core areas of world politics suggest that growing inequality is reducing the capacity of governments and existing international organizations to manage these problems effectively.
The areas surveyed include: international order, international law, welfare and social policy, global justice, regionalism and multilateralism, environmental protection, gender equality, military power, and security.