An economic analysis of the councils of the United Nations

Gould, M. 2014. An economic analysis of the councils of the United Nations. PhD thesis University of Westminster Westminster Business School

TitleAn economic analysis of the councils of the United Nations
TypePhD thesis
AuthorsGould, M.

This thesis consists of three pieces of research focussed on the Councils of the United Nations, predominantly the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). We consider three broad questions: which countries typically get on to the UNSC in its current form; which countries ought to get on to the UNSC; and how well might proposed changes to the UNSC steer it towards such ideals.

In order to address the latter two questions it is sensible to begin by investigating how the current system works and if there are any particular characteristics which influence the chances of a country being elected to the UNSC. In Chapter 2 we develop a model to test the significance of a country’s characteristics on their probability of election to the UNSC. Chapter 3 then starts by developing a set of theoretical tests which can be applied to council voting systems, such as the selection of UNSC members from the UN General Assembly. The tests score a voting system based on how well the distribution of power in the council meets the power one would expect under a system where country representatives cast their vote in the council based on the outcomes of country or regional-level referendums. We then apply this, using the implied probabilities of election which are a consequence of the results of Chapter 2, to the UNSC election process. We then finish by applying the tests of Chapter 3, which consider how equitable a proposal is, together with a further test of procedural efficiency, to each of the proposed reforms to the UNSC election process.

PublisherUniversity of Westminster
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Related outputs

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Urwin, P. and Gould, M. 2016. Estimating the Economic Impact of Acas Services. Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS).

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