Global Politics Terms/Definitions
Terms in this set (29)
Negotiations between actors in the global political arena
in response to crisis, most commonly concerning conﬂicts
and natural disasters, but also economic and health crises.
Processes associated with the spread of democracy
around the world.
Often measured in terms of increases in gross national
product (GNP) between states. A state is 'developing'
if its GNP is increasing. Is in itself a controversial term
seemingly prioritising the acquisition of wealth over
political liberties, human rights and the environment, and
as a result, preference is now placed on 'sustainable
Entire process in which states conduct their foreign
relations with one another. Means for states to cooperate
and by which they resolve conﬂ icts without force. An
instrument of foreign policy most recognisable through the
establishment of embassies and the work of ambassadors,
ministers and envoys. Vehicle through which a state
asserts itself and means by which it seeks to achieve its
national interests. Occurs on bilateral and multilateral
Seeks to address questions of morality. This extends to
global politics on the basis that a common humanity binds
all human beings beyond individuals in states to the world
as a whole, thus necessitating certain actions.
Acceleration and intensiﬁcation of exchanges of goods,
services, labour and capital which promote global
interdependence. These have been facilitated by
rapid changes in communication and technology. Has
widespread impacts on social, political, economic and
Institutions, rules, norms and legal arrangements that seek
to facilitate cooperation, and manage relations, between
states. Governance is carried out by both governmental
organisations such as the United Nations and nongovernmental organisations such as the International
Power exercised through coercion, or threatened acts of
coercion, to inﬂuence the actions of other global actors.
Most commonly exercised via military and economic forms.
Rights that are afforded to all human beings universally on
the basis of their common humanity. Rights are restricted
as much by what is necessary to secure comparable rights
of others as the right of any particular individual. The
concept of human rights has evolved over time to include
three categories: civil and political rights (right to life and
political participation), economic, social and cultural rights
(right to subsistence) and solidarity rights (right to peace,
right to clean environment)
School of thought in which foreign policy is inﬂuenced
above all else by moral principle, as opposed to practical
and pragmatic considerations.
When global actors work together to achieve common
ideals and goals.
An entity that makes decisions and takes action for
the benefit of all countries and peoples on the basis
of common duties and obligations between states,
their citizens and other global actors. Most commonly
used in the context of taking action against repressive
regimes or upholding human rights. The extent to which a
functioning and effective international community exists is
Concept of moral rightness based on ethics, law, fairness
and equity that, importantly, also seeks punishment
when said ethics are breached. Extends to global politics
through international systems of justice, such as the
International Criminal Court and International Court of
Justice, which seek to uphold international law and deter
System of coordinating relations between three or more
states, usually in pursuit of objectives in particular areas.
Groups of people claiming common bonds based on
culture, language and history. Some nations have their
own state, such as the Japanese, whilst others want their
own state such as the Tibetans and Kurds.
Political social grouping in which people within territorial
boundaries, with recognised sovereignty, have common
bonds based on culture, language and history.
Used as an all-embracing concept to justify policy
preferences and actions, and includes the goals or
objectives of foreign policy
Specialised organisations, agencies and groups
committed to promoting particular interests or issues.
These organisations work on the basis of links between
individuals across the globe and are independent from
government inﬂuence, and as such act as a moderating
inﬂuence on government behaviour.
The ability of one global actor to inﬂuence the actions of
another global actor. Power can be exercised in a range of
types and forms.
School of thought in which foreign policy is inﬂ uenced
above all else by practical and pragmatic considerations,
as opposed to moral principles.
Form of communication aimed at inﬂuencing the attitude
and perspective of the international community toward
some cause or position by presenting a one-sided
perspective. Can be used as an instrument of power to
inﬂuence the actions of other actors.
The ability to shape the actions of other global actors most
commonly exercised through diplomacy, culture, policies
and history. A term ﬁrst coined by Joseph Nye.
Legitimate or widely recognised ability to exercise effective
control of a territory within recognised borders. Primary
organising principle of global politics which provides
states with the authority to represent their territorial entity
within the international community. State sovereignty can
be challenged internally (for example, secessionist groups)
or externally (for example, one state invades another).
Traditionally the central actor in international relations,
states possess a permanent population, deﬁned territory
and recognised sovereignty. States are not necessarily
culturally homogenous, for example Australia.
Most commonly used in relation to development policies,
sustainability seeks to organise states and their economies
so that current needs are met whilst not jeopardising
meeting these needs in the future. Advocates for
maintenance of ecosystems and biodiversity as well as the
sustainable use of resources.
Issues which affect a number of states at any one time and
so require joint action to be resolved, for example global
warming, migration and terrorism.
Company whose operations and investments extend
beyond the boundaries of the state in which it is
registered. Also referred to as multinational corporations.
Policy of acting alone, with little regard for the views or
interests of other global actors, in pursuit of foreign policy
The notion of a 'society of states' where law, order and cooperation are the basis of cooperation in which states work together to achieve common ideas and goals.
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