On-site PhD conferral Leonard Schuette
Supervisors: Dr. Hylke Dijkstra, Prof. Dr. Sophie Vanhoonacker
Keywords: International Organisations, multilateralism, NATO, EU
"IO Survival Politics: International Organisations amid the Crisis of Multilateralism"
Many international organisations (IOs) are in crisis as populists in the West, revisionist powers like China and Russia, and alienated states from the Global South challenge the international order. This dissertation analyses how the IOs respond to such threats to their existence. The dissertation shows that key officials in these IOs behave in extraordinary and unexpected ways to help the IO survive. Based on 87 interviews with ambassadors, former secretary-generals, and other high ranking officials, cases include NATO’s handling of Donald Trump, the EU’s behaviour during the Brexit negotiations, or the OSCE’s failed attempt to deal with Russia’s attacks on Ukraine. In doing so, the dissertation not only sheds new light on recent political crises but also shows that many episodes could have ended differently had it not been for the likes of Jens Stoltenberg at NATO or Michel Barnier and Jean-Claude Juncker at the EU.