The world needs a UN 3.0. The extent and severity of global crises are such that business as usual provides no solution. Roland Rich’s Leviathan describes the necessary next version of the United Nations. It is a confident, competent, and independent organization that incorporates the world of business and global civil society as well as governments. It will certainly not have a monopoly on the use of force, but it will lead the international community through a mix of the principle of subsidiarity placing it at the apex, the application of the process of certification whereby thousands of entities are engaged in problem-solving, and the benefit of legitimacy earned through performance. The result will allow the UN to tackle the climate crisis, broaden the protection of democracy and human rights, govern globalization, and be better prepared for the next pandemic. Leviathan contains a vision but not a blueprint. Yet it does spell out how to achieve the first essential step – to clip the wings of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.
Roland Rich served as an Australian Ambassador and as head of the United Nations Democracy Fund. He is currently the Director of the Master of Arts Program in United Nations and Global Policy Studies at Rutgers University.
Chapter 1: Why the Leviathan?
Chapter 2: First Person Singular
Chapter 3: The General Assemblies
Chapter 4: The Secretary-General and the Secretariat
Chapter 5: Peace and Security
Chapter 6: Democracy and Human Rights
Chapter 7: Against the Sustainable Development Goals!
Chapter 8: Governing Globalization
Chapter 9: Tackling Climate Change
Chapter 10: One Billion Refugees
Chapter 11:More Pandemics
Chapter 12: A Vision, Not a Roadmap
About the Author
Roland Rich’s important new book presents a bold new vision of global governance aimed at addressing the manifold crises of our times. Drawing on his years of experience as a diplomat and UN official, Rich elaborates an agenda of United Nations reform that is ambitious but potentially within our grasp.
Roland Rich’s book provides a trenchant, no holds barred, assessment of the UN's strengths and weaknesses and makes far-reaching proposals for an organization to meet the world's future needs. It might make uncomfortable reading for those directing multilateral diplomacy, but it will provide inspiration for others, especially young people dreading the world’s current direction.
The United Nations faces an existential crisis, arguably more acute than the most difficult times of the Cold War. Roland Rich's hard-hitting and thought-provoking insider's perspective confronts the key challenges the UN currently faces, and makes a case for how the organization can regain its relevance.
At last, a jargon-free and lucid account of global governance and how to reimagine its future. Roland Rich draws on his extensive diplomatic career with the Australian foreign service, from multilateral conferences to the front lines of aid and development, and, from a decade at the helm of the UN Trust Fund to offer a wide-ranging tour-de-horizon. The chapters on health, governing globalization, the General Assemblies and Climate Change are particularly strong and Rich’s crisp, witty style demolishes one shibboleth after another while also offering common-sense ideas for change. The book has been a major addition to my classes on the UN and multilateralism at UC Berkeley and will hopefully nudge the genre of ‘how we get out of this mess’ in a thoughtful and creative way.