Alexandria Digital Research Library

The FORUM : aresponse to Paradigm Shift From State to Global Governance Field

Armanino, Daniel Carl
Degree Grantor:
University of California, Santa Barbara. Sociology
Degree Supervisor:
John W. Mohr
Place of Publication:
[Santa Barbara, Calif.]
University of California, Santa Barbara
Creation Date:
Issued Date:
International relations and Sociology
Global Elite
Global Ethnography
Political Economy
Dissertations, Academic and Online resources
Ph.D.--University of California, Santa Barbara, 2016

This study is an ethnography of the global. The Forum: A response to Paradigm Shift From State to Global Governance Field is based on what I perceive as an emerging pattern in global governance that is qualitatively different than past realities. The difference is signaled by what I perceive as an evolution of Pierre Bourdieu's theories on the state. Bourdieu's notion of the state field can be extended to the study of a global governance field wherein spheres of the state field have evolved together but at different rates and, at times, with differing objectives. These spheres include traditional governing institutions, the global economic sector, and global civil society. Traditional governance and the global economic sector were the first to begin their evolution from the level of the state to the global. Global civil society has emerged as a third actor within that field of global governance and has begun to act as mediator, and mitigator when needed, to the other actors.

The World Economic Forum is one such actor, and one that has gained significant influence within the field of global governance. In 1971 the Forum began with a vision dedicated to bringing a more cooperative model to business based on the idea of multi-stakeholder environments. By the late 1990s and early 2000s, the Forum had established itself as a leading convener of the world's elite. Bringing together top CEOs from some of the world's most influential corporations with government and social leaders from across the globe, the Forum offered a space for these individuals to converge and discuss the necessary mutuality of their operations within shrinking global space. Controversial for many reasons, the Forum has still risen as convener, broker, knowledge producer and thereby policy generator for these global elite populations. This dissertation derives the majority of its data from an ethnographic study at their headquarter operations in Geneva, Switzerland.

Based on 36 interviews with respondents ranging from a college intern to that of the founder and Chairman, as well as participant observation, and internal document analysis, this study seeks to understand how the Forum has evolved its internal culture from its inception and how this evolution has aided in organizational adaption trajectories that keep Forum services relevant to the global community that they serve. This study highlights why we should care about the Forum as an organization in the era of the global.

Physical Description:
1 online resource (195 pages)
UCSB electronic theses and dissertations
Catalog System Number:
Inc.icon only.dark In Copyright
Copyright Holder:
Daniel Armanino
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