"Past Is Prologue: Theorizing Succession in Intergovernmental Organizations."
There is an implicit but longstanding background assumption across studies of intergovernmental organizations (IGOs): new IGOs are new. On its face this assumption seems reasonable, if tautological; when an IGO is "born" it embodies a set of rules, practices, and potentially purposes that had not existed up to that point. But in reality nearly one-quarter of the IGO population is part of an institutional lineage encompassing the lives of two or more organizations. Drawing on international treaty and corporate law literatures, I shed light on the under-examined phenomenon of succession in international organization, or the transfer of functions, tasks, and rules between organizations. I theorize four types -- acquisition, replacement, merger, and spinoff (ARMS) -- arguing succession and succession type are significant determinants of IGO performance.
"Revisiting the Governance Triangle: The Evolution of Regulatory Standards Schemes," coauthored with Kenneth W. Abbott and Duncan Snidal.
The Governance Triangle heuristic, introduced in 2009, allows us to map how states and state-based IGOs, firms and NGOs, individually and in diverse combinations, collaborate and compete in setting transnational standards for business on labor and environmental issues. Based on a new, comprehensive dataset of transnational labor and environmental regulatory schemes, we use the Triangle to show cross-sectional patterns of scheme creation and dispersion at ten-year intervals between 1985 and 2015. This allows us to investigate general patterns of development, the changing nature of individual schemes over time, and the partial convergence of some schemes. We document an explosive proliferation of transnational regulatory schemes until 2007; since then, however, we observe a drop in scheme creation and a sorting-out of existing schemes through merger or failure. Our data also allow us to assess the regulatory strengths and limitations of diverse schemes, in terms of their regulatory activities (standard-setting, implementing, monitoring and enforcing) and the competencies different participating actors provide them. Finally, we document efforts by states and IGOs to orchestrate the creation and growth of transnational regulatory schemes.