Adams surveys the impact of transnational organizations and NGOs on Latin American politics since 1990. The transition from military to civilian rule in Latin American countries has benefited local progressive forces, but resilient remnants favoring the past's authoritarian politics have compelled organizations like the UN, IMF, OAS, and World Bank to engage in various campaigns to deepen democratic institutions and norms. Adams argues that to understand current political transformations in the region, one must consider the existing role of external organizations. Latin America is offered as a prime example of the increased influence transnational authorities have over political decisions that had long been the exclusive prerogative of national governments.
Beginning with the Latin American experience, Adams reviews the contemporary character of power and politics in the area, outlining how democratic transitions have been limited. UN human rights and reform initiatives are considered. Adams scrutinizes the work of the World Bank, the IMF, and the Inter-American Development Bank to modernize public administration, strengthen political institutions, enhance transparency and accountability, and fortify civil society. He also examines the work and impact and the Organization of American States and various global citizens groups.
About the Author:
FRANCIS ADAMS is Associate Professor of Political Science and Associate Director of the Graduate Program in International Studies at Old Dominion University.