This book engages with the thorny question of global urban political agency. It critically assesses the now popular statement that in the context of paralysed and failing nation state governments, cities can and will provide leadership in addressing global challenges. Cities can act politically on the global scale, but the analysis of global urban political agency needs to be firmly embedded in the field of urban studies. Collectively, the chapters in this volume contextualize urban agency in time and space and pluralize it by looking at how urban agency is nurtured through coalitions between a wide range of public and private actors. The authors develop and critically assess the conceptual underpinnings of the notion of global urban political agency from a variety of theoretical and disciplinary perspectives. The second part contains several (theoretically informed) empirical analyses of global urban political agency in cities around the globe. This book geographically expands analysis by looking beyond global cities in diverse contexts. It is highly recommended reading for scholars in the fields of international relations and urban studies who are looking for an interdisciplinary and empirically grounded understanding of global urban political agency, in a diversity of contexts and a plurality of forms.
Bestselling author Michael Shermer's exploration of science and morality that demonstrates how the scientific way of thinking has made people, and society as a whole, more moral From Galileo and Newton to Thomas Hobbes and Martin Luther King, Jr., thinkers throughout history have consciously employed scientific techniques to better understand the non-physical world. The Age of Reason and the Enlightenment led theorists to apply scientific reasoning to the non-scientific disciplines of politics, economics, and moral philosophy. Instead of relying on the woodcuts of dissected bodies in old medical texts, physicians opened bodies themselves to see what was there; instead of divining truth through the authority of an ancient holy book or philosophical treatise, people began to explore the book of nature for themselves through travel and exploration; instead of the supernatural belief in the divine right of kings, people employed a natural belief in the right of democracy. In The Moral Arc, Shermer will explain how abstract reasoning, rationality, empiricism, skepticism--scientific ways of thinking--have profoundly changed the way we perceive morality and, indeed, move us ever closer to a more just world.
As national leaders struggle to revive their economies, the people of Europe face a stark reality, which has created an opportunity for local leaders and citizen movers and shakers to rise to the occasion to spur revitalization from the bottom up. The author offers a six-point plan to prosperity.
JIHAD VS. MCWORLD is an essential text for anyone who wants to understand the challenges facing us after the tragic events of September 11, 2001 and in light of the current conflict in the Middle East. In a groundbreaking work, political scientist Benjamin R. Barber offers a penetrating analysis of the central conflict of our times: consumerist capitalism versus religious and tribal fundamentalism. These diametrically opposed but intertwined forces are tearing apart - and bringing together - the world as we know it, undermining democracy and the nation-state on which it depends. On the one hand, capitalism on the global level is rapidly dissolving the social and economic barriers between nations, transforming the world's diverse populations into a blandly uniform market. On the other hand, ethnic, religious, and racial hatreds are fragmenting the political landscape into smaller and smaller tribal units. JIHAD VS. MCWORLD is the term that Barber has coined to describe the powerful and paradoxical interdependence of these forces. In this important book, now more timely than ever before, he explores the alarming repercussions of this potent dialectic and in his new introduction sketches a democratic response to terrorism.