chapter  1
The League of Nations experiment and the quest for world order
ByM. Patrick Cottrell
Pages 16

The League of Nations represents a seminal experiment in the quest for stable, peaceful world order. Liberal order refers to a set of principles and ideas, in the intellectual tradition of liberal luminaries such as Immanuel Kant, that comprise a broader vision of a world governed by an open economic system, international laws and institutions, cooperative security, collaborative problem-solving, and democratic values. Robert Cecil, one of the architects of the League of Nations and recipient of the 1937 Nobel Peace Prize, reflected upon the League as "a great experiment in the maintenance of peace". In recent years, some have rekindled debates over the likelihood or desirability of global political integration under some form of world government. Scholars note that the forces of economic interdependence, technological innovation capabilities and the failure of nuclear deterrence could all fuel a lengthy process. The fundamental tension between national sovereignty and the need for deeper cooperation across multiple-levels of society remains.