Vol. 6 No. 4 (2023): Pakistan Journal of International Affairs
Articles

DAVID HELD’S SOCIAL DEMOCRATIC COSMOPOLITAN MODEL OF GLOBAL JUSTICE: A CRITICAL ASSESSMENT OF ITS PROSPECTS FOR PROVIDING GLOBAL ECONOMIC/DISTRIBUTIVE JUSTICE

Published 2023-12-20

Abstract

This paper explores the prospects of global distributive justice in the framework of social democratic institutional cosmopolitanism proposed by David Held. Held aspires to replace the allegedly partial and non-inclusive global market fundamentalism and unilateral security doctrine with a supposedly all-inclusive social democratic cosmopolitan order. Held holds that universalization of social democratic values and institutionalization of human rights provides a roadmap for providing global justice primarily in terms of autonomy and impartial reasoning. It has been argued that Held’s institutional cosmopolitanism is based on a paradox in that his proposed model tries to control the overwhelming global influence of a few powerful nation-states by relying on the global governance institutions, financially and militarily dependent on the same states. Held’s cosmopolitanism rules out the desirability of a social democratic world state equipped with analogous mechanisms and instruments possessed by a nation-state. In the absence of adequate legitimate global bureaucratic and coercive structures Held’s discourse of social democratic cosmopolitan justice remains mainly a moral project lacking in global political will and government apparatuses.