Keywords: globalisation, internationalisation, John Maynard Keynes, Bretton Woods system, international governance
What would John Maynard Keynes make of current international governance arrangements and the rising globalisation phenomenon?
John Maynard Keynes was an economist who had a profound influence on economic policy and the formation of international governance arrangements in the twentieth century. There is little doubt that Keynes, if he was alive today, would lament the current globalisation phenomenon – and for good reason. Empirical evidence indicates that while the Gross Domestic Product of many nations is rising, sustainable economic welfare is in decline. An alternative to globalisation – a form of economic entanglement called 'internationalisation' – needs to be established. This requires: (a) a system of exchange rate management that limits the international mobility of financial capital; (b) the World Bank to facilitate the redistribution of capital, goods, and technology from developed to developing countries; (c) the International Monetary Fund to assist developing countries to service foreign debts in ways that do not cause short-term hardship and long-term impoverishment; and (d) a refocus of the World Trade Organisation objectives to overturn the current trend of standards-lowering competition.