chapter  11
Contesting corporate globalism
Sources of power, channels for democratisation
ByJames Goodman
Pages 21

There are powerful indications that the strengthening of transnational power sources ‘short-circuits’ liberal democracy and necessitates an extensive redemocratisation of the emerging ‘hybrid’ political system. Various models have been promoted for achieving this. Some argue for an institutional transformation towards ‘cosmopolitan democracy’, through for instance democratised transnational agencies and cross-country referenda which would allow the processes of governance to escape the confines of national states (Held 1995). Such institutional cosmopolitanism hinges on a normative transformation and reorientation in the legal regimes that underpin citizenship rights. In this vein, some argue for a ‘cosmopolitan citizenship…to counterbalance the increased opportunities for elite dominance which accompany the decline of the modern territorial state’ (Linklater 1998:193). But the required changes in political culture will only emerge as a result of political mobilisation and here, for many observers, hopes are often vested in an array of ‘old’ and ‘new’ social movements. The World Order Models Project, for example, argues that this ‘globalisation from below…gives promise to the vision of cosmopolitan democracy’ (Falk 1995:254; Falk 1999). As Sousa-Santos argues, social movements are emerging as ‘a global

transformative audience, in charge of the agendas of cosmopolitanism’, and in doing so ‘constitute the backbone of transnational agency’ (Sousa-Santos 1995:267; see also Lipschutz 1992; Keck and Sikkink 1998; Smith et al 1998; Sakamoto 1996; Walker 1994).