International Economic Cooperation in Troubled Times: A Call for Strong Action by the G20


The leaders of the G20 will meet on 30 November and 1 December in Buenos Aires for their annual summit. They need to acknowledge that the last two years have been characterized by strong headwinds for the world economy. This time, however, it is not a mixture of poor macroeconomic policies and bad business decisions – as in 2008 when they met in Washington for their first summit – that endangers the well-being of billions of citizens around the globe. This time the threat stems from deliberate political decisions, in particular on trade.

Can think tanks save the world – and should they?

Photo: Centro Cultural Kirchner
In mid-September, Buenos Aires hosted an interesting and innovative event, organized by a variety of think tanks: the Think20 Summit. A total of about one thousand participants from almost 70 countries dealt with the topics of the G20 summit, which will take place in Buenos Aires at the end of November. The Argentine government has made the future of work, sustainable food supply, infrastructure and gender justice its priorities.

T20 – Cooperation to overcome the challenges to multilateralism?

Photo: Buenos Aires Skyline

The T20 summit assembled 1000 researchers from 68 countries during the past two days in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to present policy recommendations on issues such as future of work, climate action, trade and social inclusion. A joint communique was handed over to G20 Chair and Argentinean President Mauricio Macri that called for more engagement to overcome the challenges faced by multilateral cooperation in all these areas.

Latin American cooperation towards the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires

Photo: Obelisk Buenos Aires

What might become of Latin America’s presence in the G20 following Argentina’s presidency? If previous attempts to forge a common platform for Argentina, Brazil and Mexico have not left a lasting memory, perhaps this time around it looks different? Indeed, the Sherpas decided to tighten dialogue since fall 2017 with the view to “translate different regional outlooks into a representative stance” that hopefully could spill over onto the next G20 presidency.

G20 should become more accountable – here’s how

Photo: "Traffic in China"

The future of globalization will decisively depend on the future of international political cooperation. The G20 is one of the most important, but also one of the most criticized fora for the cooperation between the economically most powerful states. It is thus of upmost importance that it becomes more accountable to the public. We argue here that the most feasible and least intrusive step forward with regard to the G20’s accountability would be to take measures to increase its transparency.