50 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2009 Last revised: 13 Mar 2016
Date Written: January 21, 2010
In this paper we explore the proposition that changes in international organization (IO) behavior might derive from the IO’s interactions with other IOs. Norm diffusion across IOs may take place via socialization by the norm entrepreneur—which, in early stages, may rely on material incentives or may occur as the norm adopter emulates the norm initiator. We also address non-IO sources of norms: member states and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). We extend theories of norm diffusion by applying them to interactions between international organizations. We test the hypotheses that derive from this approach using a statistical analysis of Islamic Development Bank (IDB) environmental lending. The IDB provides an ideal setting to evaluate our hypotheses: the originators of most global norms, the advanced industrial democracies, do not have voting shares on the Islamic bank’s executive board. This allows us to focus on the effects of global norms diffused by IOs where the industrial democracies are the most powerful members from the effects of the preferences of IO’s member states, who jointly form the collective principal of the IDB. We find evidence for socialization to IOs through non-material and non-delegated mechanisms. Specifically, international organizations can be socialized through common institutional memberships as well through example of normatively powerful organizations.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Nielson, Daniel L. and O'Keefe, Christopher, IOs as Norms Platforms: The World Bank’s Influence on Environmental Lending at the Islamic Development Bank (January 21, 2010). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1449259 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1449259