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Return to: The Daito Bunka 2000 Lectures

The G8 and Global Governance:
The Role of Canada, Japan, and the United States

Professor John Kirton
University of Toronto
Instructor

Ms. Gina Stephens
University of Toronto
Teaching Assistant

Syllabus

This series of lectures examines the role of Canada, Japan, and the United States in addressing the contemporary challenges of global governance through the G7/G8 system of international institutions. It compares the approaches, and the interactions, of the three leading Pacific "principal power" members of the G7/G8 in the shaping of international order in international institutions such as the G7/G8, the United Nations, and regional forums such as APEC, and in regard to the critical economic, transnational and security issues facing the global community as the twenty-first century opens. Its purpose is to explore, in a comparative context, the causes, courses and consequences of the G7/G8 and international institutional diplomacy, and how they can and might combine to shape an international order to meet the needs of their peoples and the global community.

The course begins by examining the competing conceptions of global governance, the development of the United Nations, G7/G8, and regional systems of global governance, and the basic approach of Canada, Japan, and the United States to each. It then examines in turn the role played in the G7/G8 by Canada, Japan, and the United States in the G7/G8 from the 1975 inception of the forum, through to the forthcoming Year 2000 summit in Okinawa. Next it examines the relationship of the G7/G8 to the two other consequential Pacific powers Russia and China focusing both on the G8's approach to them and on their role in the G8 and other institutions, notably the G20, created by the G7.

The course then turns to the G7/G8's efforts to deal with the critical issues of contemporary global governance, in both the economic and security domains. Here it examines the Asian-turned-global financial crisis and effort to strengthen the international financial system from 1997 to the present, and conflict prevention and human security in its various dimensions. In each case, the course examines the respective policy and diplomacy of Canada, Japan, and the U.S. and the way they combine to influence G7/G8 outcomes.

The course culminates by looking ahead to the forthcoming Japanese-hosted Okinawa G7/G8 Summit on July 21-23, the prospects for it, and the likely and possible role the three Pacific powers could play at it.

Course Texts:

Required:

1. Junichi Takase, Summit (2000, in Japanese). This is a very contemporary history of the G7/G8 Summit, focusing on Japan's role and looking ahead to the Okinawa Summit. You should begin reading it at the start and read through to the end as quickly as possible.

2. Mitsuru Kurosawa and John Kirton, North Pacific Triangle (Tokyo, Sairyusha Press, 1995, in Japanese). Updated and expanded as Michael Fry, John Kirton, and Mitsuru Kurosawa, eds., The North Pacific Triangle: The United States, Japan, and Canada at Century's End (University of Toronto Press, Toronto, 1999, in English). This collection deals with the three pacific powers of the Canada, Japan, and the United States in the G7/G8 and world affairs more broadly. In the Japanese language version, you should start with the introduction and then read the Kirton chapter, before moving on to the others as your interest dictates.

 

Recommended Background:

3. Robert Putnam and Nicholas Bayne, Hanging Together (Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1987, in English). Also available in Japanese.

4. Peter Hajnal, The G7/G8 System (Ashgate, Aldershot, UK, 1999, in English).

We will also draw upon the other books in the G8 and Global Governance series, starting with Michael Hodges, John Kirton and Joseph Daniels, eds. The G8's Role in the New Millennium (Ashgate, Aldershot, UK, 1999, in English).

 

List of Sessions

1. Global Governance and the G7/G8, Monday July 10

a. What is global governance and why do we study it?

b. What competing sources of governance are there in the world?

c. How has governance through intergovernmental institutions grown since 1648?

d. What role has the G7/G8 played?

e. How do we explain effective global governance by the G7/G8?

Start reading Takese's Summit.

2. The North Pacific Principal Power Triangle, Monday, July 10

a. What are "principal powers"?

b. Why are the U.S., Japan, and Canada principal powers?

c. What is the new "North Pacific Triangle"?

d. Is such a triangle evident in the quest to shape global governance?

Start reading Kurosawa and Kirton's North Pacific Triangle, with the Introduction and then John Kirton's "The Emerging Pacific Partnership: Japan, Canada and the United States at the G7 Summit," pp. 292-314.

3. Canada's G7/G8 Diplomacy, Tuesday, July 11

a. Why was Canada allowed into the G7?

b. Is it a full member in the system now?

c. What distinctive approaches and advantages does it bring?

d. How has it performed as an equal member?

e. Why is Canada able to perform as an equal member?

f. How will it approach the Okinawa Summit?

Peter Hajnal and John Kirton, "The Evolving Role and Agenda of the G7/G8: A North American Perspective," NIRA Review 7:2 (Spring 2000). A Japanese language version may be available.

John Kirton, "The Diplomacy of Concert: Canada, the G7 and the Halifax Summit," Canadian Foreign Policy 3 (Spring 1995).

4. Japan's G7/G8 Diplomacy, Tuesday, July 11

a. Why was Japan admitted into the G7?

b. What distinctive approaches and advantages does it bring?

c. How has it performed as an equal member?

d. Why does it do so?

e. Why is Japan essential to the G7/G8's overall success?

f. How will it approach the Okinawa Summit?

 

5. The United States G7/G8 Diplomacy, Wednesday, July 12

With Gina Stephens

a. What was the U.S. role in the creation of the G7?

b. What distinctive approaches and advantages does it bring?

c. How has it performed as an equal member?

d. Why?

e. What roles does it perform in the G7/G8?

f. Is it likely to perform those roles at Okinawa?

John Kirton, "U.S. Foreign Policy and the G8," Lecture given at Chuo University, July 6, 2000. This should be available at www.g7.utoronto.ca.

6. Russia and the G7/G8 System, Wednesday, July 12

With Gina Stephens

a. Why was Russia admitted as a G7/G8 member?

b. When and why is it likely to become a full member?

c. What distinctive approaches and advantages does it bring?

d. How has it performed as an equal member?

e. Why?

f. Is it likely to do so at Okinawa

7. China and the G7/G8 System, Thursday, July 13

With Gina Stephens

With presentation by Mr. Marc Lalonde on the G7 Information Centre and other Internet resources.

a. What do analysts think China's association with the G7/G8 should be?

b. Why did German chancellor Schroeder and Japanese prime minister Obuchi move in 1999 and 2000 to forge a closer association?

c. How has China become more associated with the G7/G8 in recent years?

d. What will and should happen in the future?

John Kirton, "The G7, China and the International Financial System," paper presented at an International Think Tank Forum, November 10-12, Shenzen, China, available at www.g7.utoronto.ca.

8. The Financial Crisis and System Reform of 1997-2000, Thursday, July 13

a. How did the G7 cope with the Asian turned global financial crisis of 1997-8?

b. How did it compare with and relate to other international institutions such as the IMF?

c. Why was the G7 so effective, in a world of intervulnerability bred by globalization?

d. What has been accomplished, and what remains to be done to strengthen the international financial system to meet the need of the global community in the twenty-first century?

e. What advances will Okinawa make?

John Kirton, "The Dynamics of G7 leadership in Crisis Response and System Reconstruction," in Karl Kaiser, John Kirton and Joseph Daniels, eds., Shaping a New International Financial System: Challenges of Governance in a Globalizing World (Ashgate, Aldershot, 2000, in English), pp. 65-94. Also in the version published in the International Journal in Autumn 1999 and available at www.g7.utoronto.ca.

You may also wish to read the introduction and conclusion to the Ashgate book if you have a particular interest in this topic.

9. Fostering Human Security

a. Is the G7/G8 a political and security institution?

b. How did its role in this field evolve?

c. How and why did it make a major advance with the Kosovo conflict of spring 1999?

d. How has it entered the conflict prevention field?

e. What advances will Okinawa make?

John Kirton, "Creating Peace and Human Security: The G8 and Okinawa Summit Contribution," Lecture given at Soka University, May 26, 2000. Available at www.g7.utoronto.ca.

10. Prospects for the Okinawa Summit

a. What are the plans for the Okinawa Summit?

b. Why is it likely to be a substantial success?

c. How and why could it be an historic Summit?

Peter Hajnal and John Kirton, "The Evolving Role and Agenda of the G7/G8: A North American Perspective," NIRA Review 7:2 (Spring 2000). A Japanese language version may be available.

John Kirton, "Prospects for the Okinawa Summit," Paper prepared on June 23. Available at www.g7.utoronto.ca.

Assignments:

There will be one final take-home test, due to be submitted on Monday, July 17, 2000, at 9:00 am. You will answer ONE of the following questions, in Japanese or English, with a 1,500 word (six-page) essay. (Extra consideration will be given to those who write in English.)

Answer ONE of the following questions:

1. Why are some G7/G8 Summits successful while others are not?

2. Are the United States, Japan, and Canada all really principal powers, in the North Pacific Triangle and in the G7/G8?

3. How effective has Canada OR Japan OR the United States OR Russia been in accomplishing the distinctive roles it has sought to play in the G7/8? Why?

4. What has the G7/G8 accomplished in the field of the international financial system or international security? What is the Okinawa Summit likely to accomplish in this regard?

5. How successful is the Okinawa Summit likely to be, relative to the 25 summits that have taken place before? Why?


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