The network of interlocking directorates between international economic organizations (2004)
Faculty of Applied Economics
Antwerp :University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics, Department of International Economics, International Management and Diplomacy, 2005
Research paper / UA, Faculteit TEW ; 2005:24
University of Antwerp
As many international economic issues are interrelated, the competences of international economic organizations are not always clear-cut and their activities inevitably overlap. In order to avoid mutual conflicts and to guarantee the well functioning of the international economic system, these organizations need to interact. Various institutional cooperation arrangements have been concluded in this respect. In this paper, we suggest that international economic organizations also interact in a second, more informal way: As many officials and representatives combine mandates in several organizations, they personally constitute a linkage between these organizations. We analyze the extent of overlapping appointments also defined as interlocking directorates between a limited selection of international economic organizations, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank Group, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). We examine possible explanations and determinants of the interlocking directorates, and we also explore the importance of these interlocking directorates for the functioning of the resulting network of international economic organizations. We argue that the interlocking directorates probably enhance communication flows and strengthen mutual trust between the organizations, in that way stimulating the institutional cooperation and coordination between the international economic organizations.