The global governance structures seen in the world today are the products of a long trajectory shaped by historical failures and successes alike. The ideal of political cooperation among global actors in response to shared problems is not a new idea, but has only been embodied by concrete institutions in the last century. Attempts at global governance have always faced the hurdle of being tasked with solving humanity’s most pressing and enduring challenges while respecting the circumstances of individual nation states. While most people recognize the need for national legislative bodies to enact laws, executives to implement them and to run the government, judiciaries endowed with the power to interpret the law when needed, central banks to issue currency, and police forces to guarantee the safety of citizens, there is significant debate concerning the extent to which the same structures should exist at the supranational level.
The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking, and thus we drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.
— Albert Einstein, 1946
The concepts essential to global governance have been illumined throughout history. They are foundational to the ideas proposed by the Forum. We want to recognize some of the visionaries that have inspired our work.
View some of the original texts that have shaped the course of governance as we know it today.