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World Culture and Transnational Economic Governance: Theory and Evidence



The current global financial crisis has led to renewed efforts to strengthen the formal rules and organizations of transnational economic governance. A substantial body of research in sociology and related fields suggests that the informal norms, values, expectations, and ideas that make up a world culture are equally important for understanding why countries cooperate, and why those cooperative efforts sometimes fail. This article explores these insights, showing how they can be applied to current debates about transnational economic governance, by paying particular attention to the emergence, adoption, and evolution of the Basel Capital Accords.