Jacqueline Best is an Associate Professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa. Her work focuses on the social, cultural and political underpinnings of the global economic system, which she studies by examining the efforts of organizations such as the International Monet...
Jacqueline Best is an Associate Professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa. Her work focuses on the social, cultural and political underpinnings of the global economic system, which she studies by examining the efforts of organizations such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to govern the global economy.
I am interested in understanding the social, cultural and political character of the global economic system. I do so by studying how international institutions and actors work to govern the global political economy. For some of my comments on current events, check out my blog.
My current research is organized around several related themes: a book on The Rise of Provisional Governance? The Politics of Failure and the Transformation of Global Development Finance , to be published by Cambridge University Press in 2013, examines recent changes in how the development finance is governed, focusing on the increasing reliance of organizations like the IMF, the World Bank and donors on a more provisional kind of expertise—a more indirect and symbolic form of governance that is more preoccupied with past and future failures. I am also working with Alexandra Gheciu on a collaborative project, to be published as an edited volume by Cambridge, The Return of the Public, but Not As We Knew It: Changing Practices of Global Governance. This project brings together a range of scholars to examine the transformation of the public dimension of global governance practices in the areas of finance, security, environment and development. A further project on Cultural Political Economy, pursued jointly with my colleague Matthew Paterson, seeks to understand the cultural constitution of contemporary economic practices
I have also written a number of academic and popular pieces on the recent global financial crisis, reflecting on the sources of the crisis and on some of the lessons that we might draw for the future.
This work draws on some of the ideas that I first developed in my book, The Limits of Transparency, which takes a historical look at the inherently ambiguous and unstable nature of international financial markets and suggests that governance mechanisms that accomodate a certain measure of constructive ambiguity are likely to more effective than those that deny the instability of markets seek to pursue perfect transparency.