Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Climate Solutions Lab

Partial Hegemony: Oil Politics and International Order

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

4:00pm – 5:30pm

Watch on Watson's YouTube channel

Book signing to follow.

Join us for a discussion of Jeff Colgan's new book, Partial Hegemony: Oil Politics and International Order. Colgan is Richard Holbrooke Associate Professor of Political Science and International and Public Affairs, and director of the Climate Solutions Lab.

Discussants are Daniel Drezner, Professor of International Politics, The Fletcher School, Tufts University; Jennifer Erickson, Associate Professor of Political Science, Boston College; and Amy Myers Jaffe, Research Professor and Managing Director of the Climate Policy Lab, The Fletcher School, Tufts University.

About the book:

The global history of oil politics, from World War I to the present, can teach us much about world politics, climate change, and international order in the twenty-first century.

When and why does international order change? The largest peaceful transfer of wealth across borders in all of human history began with the oil crisis of 1973. OPEC countries turned the tables on the most powerful businesses on the planet, quadrupling the price of oil and shifting the global distribution of profits. It represented a huge shift in international order. Yet, the textbook explanation for how world politics works-that the most powerful country sets up and sustains the rules of international order after winning a major war-doesn't fit these events, or plenty of others. Instead of thinking of "the" international order as a single thing, Jeff Colgan explains how it operates in parts, and often changes in peacetime. Partial Hegemony offers lessons for leaders and analysts seeking to design new international governing arrangements to manage an array of pressing concerns ranging from US-China rivalry to climate change, and from nuclear proliferation to peacekeeping. A major contribution to international relations theory, this book promises to reshape our understanding of the forces driving change in world politics.