From 'Another world is possible' to 'Our country first'? Populism and Global Cooperation

14th Käte Hamburger Dialogue

Organized by: Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research (KHK/GCR21) and NRW School of Governance, University of Duisburg-Essen

Date: Monday 13th May 2019, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.

Venue: Gerhard-Mercator-Haus, Lotharstraße 57, 47057 Duisburg

“We reject the ideology of globalism, and we embrace the doctrine of patriotism.” With these words, US president Donald Trump reiterated and universalized his campaign slogan “America First” in his second speech in the General Assembly of the United Nations on September 25th, 2018. The subsequent list of priorities and decisions gave a very vivid illustration of what this dichotomous distinction means for him and his administration: Rejection of the International Criminal Court, rejection of the Iran Nuclear Deal, rejection of the Global Compact on Migration, rejection of multilateral trade agreements, questioning of US contributions to the UN peacekeeping missions and to foreign aid.

Against this background, this Käte Hamburger Dialogue set out to discuss questions concerning the relationship between populism and the de-legitimation of global cooperation, including the following:

  • What is the role of nationalism and de-legitimations of global cooperation in populist discourse and politics?
  • How can the growing appeal of populist politics directed against global cooperation be understood?
  • Is it feasible and normatively desirable to develop counter-narratives and to appeal to the emotions in order to increase legitimacy for global cooperation in different policy fields?



Introduction and Programme