Miles Kahler

Senior Fellow for Global Governance


Global and regional governance: international economic and financial institutions; Asia-Pacific regional institutions; role of the United States and the emerging economies in global and regional institutions


Miles Kahler is senior fellow for global governance at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, DC, and distinguished professor at American University’s School of International Service. Previously, he was Rohr professor of Pacific international relations and distinguished professor of political science at the University of California (UC), San Diego’s School of International Relations and Pacific Studies and in the political science department.

Kahler has been a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (2012–2013) and Stanford University’s Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (2007–2008). He was senior fellow for international political economy at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York (1994–1996). He is a member of the editorial boards of International OrganizationGlobal Governance, and Global Summitry. Kahler was founding director of UC San Diego’s Institute for International, Comparative, and Area Studies, and its international studies program.

He has published widely in the fields of international politics and international political economy, including articles and books on global governance, international financial institutions, and Asia-Pacific regionalism. His current research centers on emerging economies and global governance and challenges to the nation-state as a dominant unit in the international system. He is also developing, in cooperation with Barry Eichengreen (UC Berkeley) and with the support of the Centre for International Governance Innovation and the Institute for New Economic Thinking, a research network that engages younger scholars from emerging economies in contemporary debates on global economic governance.

Kahler recently coedited Integrating Regions: Asia in Comparative Context, coedited and contributed to Politics in the New Hard Times, and wrote “Rising Powers and Global Governance: Negotiating Change in a Resilient Status Quo” in International Affairs.

Rising Powers and Global Governance

The largest emerging economies—China, India, Brazil, among others—were the economic stars of the last decade. With growing economic weight came demands for a larger role in major global governance institutions. These rising powers also demonstrated their ability to promote or veto global negotiations in issue areas from trade to climate change. Although their economic growth has recently slowed, these emerging economies will exert growing influence on the architecture of global governance. Given their deepening integration into the international economy, they could become "responsible stakeholders," stalwart supporters of the existing rules of the game. In the absence of institutional reforms, such as changes in IMF and World Bank governance, rising powers could challenge the existing order, creating their own parallel or alternative institutions. Finally, demands from their citizens for economic and social advancement could point to a future of limited global engagement and free riding on the existing rules of the game. I am exploring these alternative futures in articles and a book-length study. I also convene a roundtable series on Rising Powers and Global Governance to explore these issues.

All Publications


Conservative Globalizers: Reconsidering the Rise of the Rest

Author: Miles Kahler
World Politics Review

As the most powerful emerging economies—Brazil, China, and India—slow after years of unprecedented growth, panic over their challenge to global order seems unfounded. But stalled performance does not make them irrelevant, and advanced economies should integrate them into global economic institutions, writes Miles Kahler in World Politics Review.

See more in Global; Financial Markets; Emerging Markets


Iran, Sanctions, and the Illusion of a Better Bargain

Author: Miles Kahler

At this point in time, given the current Iranian leadership, the state of Iranian public opinion, and Iranian economic conditions, relying on unilateral economic leverage to obtain a better deal is an illusion, argues Miles Kahler. More likely it would drive Iran further in the direction of North Korea—an unrestrained nuclear program and an economically isolated, unreformed regime. 

See more in Iran; United States; Treaties and Agreements