Norms research has made significant inroads into examining their emergence and influence in international relations, while recognizing international organizations (IOs) as key social sites for norms to be created and/or disseminated. This paper interrogates how IOs as “organizational platforms” (Finnemore 1996) influence the norm building process. Going beyond state-centric approaches to norm construction, it argues that the process of taking up a norm by an IO does affect the norm’s power. A norm’s strength is determined by the extent to which it is uncontested and taken for granted as appropriate for actors with a given identity, which becomes institutionalized and internalized over time. Building on recent work that details how a norm’s strength is also derived from its specificity, the article assesses how the different ways an IO adopts norms may affect the norm’s power. The article provides a taxonomy of norm power according to degrees of institutionalization, internalization and specificity, arguing that the strength of a norm is derived from the norm building process, where a norm may be generated from outside or inside the organization, or from top-down or bottom up processes. Viewing the norm building process in this way provides insight into the effect of IOs as social sites in strengthening a norm.
|Number of pages||21|
|Publication status||Published - 2014|
|Event||55th ISA Annual Convention: International Studies Association Conference 2014 - Toronto, Canada|
Duration: 26 Mar 2014 → 29 Mar 2014
Conference number: 55
|Conference||55th ISA Annual Convention|
|Period||26/03/2014 → 29/03/2014|