Reform of the United Nations Security Council: Communitarianism versus Cosmopolitanism

University essay from Lunds universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to analyze the theoretical perspective of the UN High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenge and Change on reform of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). This is done by studying two contrasting theories and applying them to the case of UNSC reform. Both perspectives presume the universal norm of democracy. The common ground is noticed in the similarities between the reform proposals of the two theories. However their different emphasis on the dual subject status of democracy (communitarianism: states and cosmopolitanism: individuals) makes it possible to tell their reform proposals apart. The communitarian approach suggests the enlargement of the UNSC by small and diverse states. The cosmopolitan theory conversely supports an expansion by the demographically largest states. The result of this paper deduces that the UNSC reform proposals of the report by the UN High-Level Panel appear to lean somewhat more towards the cosmopolitan theory.

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