Institutional Racism in International Relations

Event time: 
Friday, January 20, 2023 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm
Henry R. Luce Hall (LUCE ), 203 See map
34 Hillhouse Avenue
New Haven, CT 06511
Event description: 

How does racism structure the patterns of cooperation and contestation in international relations? In the century since Japan’s failed proposal for a League of Nations racial equality clause, overt expressions of racism have become increasingly taboo in international diplomacy. However, I argue that institutional racism has emerged as a fundamental feature of the contemporary international order. Much like domestic politics, overt racism has given way to systemic racism, in which seemingly race-neutral rules and institutions perpetuate racial disparities and hierarchies. Despite their many virtues, international institutions play a central role in sustaining these distortions. Using new data on language use, membership, and leadership in international organizations, I show that despite a shift toward antiracist language, membership and personnel appointments in international organizations remain heavily biased. The findings have important implications for the efforts of Japan and other underrepresented countries to secure greater representation and voice within the international order.—————————————-Phillip Y. Lipscy is professor of political science at the University of Toronto, where he is also Chair in Japanese Politics and Global Affairs and the Director of the Centre for the Study of Global Japan at the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy. In addition, he is cross-appointed as professor at the Faculty of Law at the University of Tokyo. His research addresses substantive topics such as international cooperation, international organizations, the politics of energy and climate change, international relations of East Asia, and the politics of financial crises. He has also published extensively on Japanese politics and foreign policy. Lipscy’s book from Cambridge University Press, Renegotiating the World Order: Institutional Change in International Relations, examines how countries seek greater international influence by reforming or creating international organizations. Before arriving at the University of Toronto, Lipscy was assistant professor of political science at Stanford University, and he obtained his Ph.D. in political science at Harvard University.——————————-This series is sponsored by the Japan Foundation.

Phillip Y. Lipscy - Professor, Department of Political Science and Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, University of Toronto