As governments confront many challenges that are global in scale, leaders find they must cooperate in responding to financial, climate, terrorism and other crises. As a result, a global audience has developed keen interest in how and why nations select their leaders. On one hand, citizens expect sensible and collective action, transparency and fair representation; on the other hand, citizens and leaders fret about compromising security, sovereignty or loss of control. Diplomats and global organizations like the United Nations aim to achieve a balance, even as global communications allow citizens in democracies or authoritarian states to steer attention to issues. Attention to citizen demands and multilateral cooperation contribute to stability.

Washington Hopes for the Best; Beijing Prepares for the Worst

Following the reelection of Chen Shui-bian, window narrows for a peaceful settlement
Richard Baum
May 24, 2004

Putin: Talk Like a Democrat, Walk Like an Autocrat

Economic realities and Western nudging may yet change his gait
Strobe Talbott
May 12, 2004

How Far East Can Europe Go?

Turkey wants to join the EU, but some say Europe ends where Islam begins
Shada Islam
May 3, 2004

Hit by Spanish Withdrawal Syndrome

Spain's pull-out of Iraq raises fear of further erosion in trans-Atlantic relations
Shada Islam
April 21, 2004

US Attempt at Domination Hobbled by Contradiction

Washington cannot mix mercantilist security strategy with global laissez-faire economy
Michael Kraig
April 19, 2004

Taiwan's Challenge to China and the World - Part II

A ‘Greater Chinese Union' offers best political solution
Linda Jakobson
March 15, 2004

Japan's Shinzo Abe Hails Africa as “Growth Center”

Japan’s aid package offers alternative to Chinese influence
June 4, 2013

Lobbying for the Greater Good

Ordinary citizens can lobby, too
David Bornstein
June 3, 2013

Tunisia Turns Up Heat on the Salafis

Extremists promote social welfare in Tunisia, jihad in nearby states
Roula Khalaf
May 30, 2013

Afghans Nervous as Nawaz Sharif Returns

Will Sharif pursue intervention or trade?
Hafizullah Gardesh, Mina Habib
May 29, 2013