Global Governance, International Law, Urbanization

Cities and International Lawyers Need to Start Talking to One Another

November 22, 2019
By William Burke-White, Inaugural Director | Diplomatic Courier

Our Inaugural Director William Burke-White has written a piece for Diplomatic Courier on the increasingly urgent need for international lawyers to take notice of cities. This piece is featured on the Courier's channel for Perry World House's Great Powers and Urbanization Project, working with Perry World House and other partners. 

Over the past decade, cities have quickly assumed a place on the global stage. From the Chicago Climate Charter, signed by mayors of more than 50 cities, to immigration debates raging around the world, cities are meaningfully influencing global political discourse. Yet, international law—the primary system of norms, rules, and institutions through which the international order has been constructed—has remained off limits to cities and other non-state actors. The result is a disconnect between cities’ growing role in global affairs and their continued exclusion from the formal structures of the international system.

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