The Myth of a Multipolar World
Is the world multipolar? The Swedish Institute of International Affairs in collaboration with Stockholm Univeristy invited to a public symposium examining the evidence for multipolarity, with Stephen G. Brooks arguing that assertions of multipolarity, based on current evidence, are off the mark.
Dominant public discourses today claim the world is multipolar, with the US in decline and rising powers ready to assume leadership. Such claims strengthen commentators’ arguments for a less ambitious US foreign policy, citing failures of US intervention abroad and domestic instability at home. Do claims of multipolarity stand up to scrutiny, however?
Stephen G. Brooks was joined by a panel to discuss – and challenge – his argument the world is neither bipolar nor multipolar, and it is not about to become so. The United States may have become less dominant over the past 20 years, but this development should be put in perspective. What has changed is only the nature of unipolarity – not its existence.
Stephen G. Brooks is Professor of Government at Dartmouth College, USA and guest professor of international relations at Stockholm University
Stephanie Winkler is Vetenskapsrådet Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Economic History and International Relations at Stockholm University.
Magnus Petersson is is Professor of International Relations and chair of the Department of Economic History and International Relations at Stockholm University.
The conversation will be moderated by Jakob Hallgren, Director at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs.