The Phil Lind Initiative: The Unravelling of the Liberal Order

Lind Initiative 2018 series

The world is undergoing a wrenching process of geopolitical transformation. The liberal order that dominated for the past half century is unravelling. The Phil Lind Initiative’s 2018 series and course is exploring these and other questions, with visits from the world’s leading intellectuals on the subject including Ed Luce, Francis Fukuyama, Steven Pinker, Misha Glenny, Susan Rice, and Anne-Marie Slaughter. Learn more about them on the Lind Initiative Current Series page.

The Lind course, led by visiting scholar Robert Muggah (Igarapé Institute and SecDev Group) and professor Taylor Owen (UBC School of Public Policy and Global Affairs and UBC Journalism), involves 30 upper-level undergraduate and graduate students at UBC. The curriculum explores the future of the global liberal order after a half century of dominance. From the emergence of new spheres of geopolitical influence to the resurgence of nationalist movements, the world is entering a period of intense volatility and turbulence. The future of the liberal order is uncertain. The structures that kept it in place are unravelling. The rapid spread of the digital commons and new technologies are changing the rules of the game, diminishing the power and influence of the state. Transnational threats such as climate change, mass migration, persistent inequality, and political violence are likewise disrupting the global order and paving the way for authoritarianism and populism.

Will the liberal order hold, or is its disassembling inevitable? What kinds of global order(s) does the future hold?