The Social Construction of Transnational Governance: The Case of the UN Global Compact

Patrick Haack, Andreas Rasche

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearchpeer-review


    This paper examines the social construction of transnational governance schemes (TGSs hereafter), inter-organizational networks comprising public and/or private actors that jointly regulate global public policy issues, such as the protection of global ecosystems. We focus on the UN Global Compact (UNGC), one of the largest and most prominent TGSs. We create a data set of publically available documents on the UNGC, analyze how UNGC advocates and UNGC critics publically conceptualize and (de-)legitimize the UNGC, and examine how this process develops over time. By now, we have compiled a data base of more than 1,500 documents (speeches, news articles, press releases, blog entries, etc.), developed, tested, and validated a comprehensive coding scheme, coded more than 250 documents by means of the NVivo software, and carried out preliminary qualitative and quantitative analyses of the data. First results show, among other things, that the target of delegitimation strategies of UNGC critics have shifted from the UNGC network to its network affiliates. This indicates the growing legitimation of the UNGC as a network category. Furthermore, we also discern a transition in the communication of advocates, presumably to safeguard the integrity and legitimacy of the network category. Our findings contribute to our understanding of the communicativeideational
    dynamics underlying the emergence and consolidation of TGSs and other forms of global organizing. They also add to the growing research stream on legitimation and categorization of organizations.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2015
    Number of pages6
    Publication statusPublished - 2015
    EventThe 31st EGOS Colloquium 2015: Organizations and the Examined Life: Reason, Reflexivity and Responsibility - Athen, Greece
    Duration: 2 Jul 20154 Jul 2015
    Conference number: 31


    ConferenceThe 31st EGOS Colloquium 2015
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