Editor’s Note: Colin Bradford and Johannes Linn detail the importance of the G-20 Summit and its impact worldwide and on Turkey in the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs quarterly journal, “International Economic Issues,” a special edition on the global financial crisis. Bradford and Linn argue that the more inclusive Group of 20 is better suited to act as the global steering group, and provide solutions to the global financial crisis, than the G-8. They recommend that Turkey actively engages in the G-20 summit process in order to strengthen Turkey’s role as a respected and effective member of the international community.
Introduction (revised, taken from the article)
U.S. President George W. Bush convened the first G-20 Summit in Washington, DC on November 15, 2008 in response to the financial and economic crisis. This event represented a major shift in the paradigm of global governance. Until then, the G-8 Summit—representing only industrial and mostly former colonial powers—had assumed the role of the global apex institution. The G-8 met once a year to discuss and potentially decide on major global economic and security issues. The global financial crisis of 2008 has made it inescapably clear that the G-8 forum is no longer adequate to lead as the global steering group. Another forum had to be found and the G-20 offered itself as a pragmatic alternative. This article briefly reviews the history of the G-8 and the G-20 forums, discusses their significance for the world and to Turkey and explores the way forward for the G-20 Summit.