With Donald Trump officially inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States, many are wondering about the consequences of a Trump presidency for the international system. Prof. Dr. Klaus Segbers addressed the issue in a lecture at KAS-Foundation on Monday night.
News from Jan 25, 2017
With the reality of a Trump presidency, uncertain times are ahead for Global Politics. After the Republican nominee has caused controversy throughout his campaign, it seems uncertain what to expect of a President Trump, who vowed to take notable action during his first days in office. While Chancellor Merkel was clear that she offers the newly appointed President cooperation on the basis of shared values, President Trump made statements that leave his adherence to these values in question.
For instance, will the European Union and the USA still share the same values when it comes to international cooperation? With his isolationist agenda, how will the new president affect established alliances like NATO or UNO and what is ahead for international trade? What will be the consequences for the German export market under the new US protectionism? How will the role of other powers like China and Russia change? And finally, will this new US isolationism further strengthen populist movements around the world?
At the “Biesdorfer Gespräche” event series at the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation, Prof. Segbers dedicated his lecture to these questions. Prof. Segbers sees the main reason for people’s insecurities in the negative aspects of Globalization. With the world becoming more complex and technologized on the one hand and the nation states losing assertiveness on the other, people become susceptible for the easy narratives of populists. Hence, the potential threat of populism lies in the movement and believe-system it creates rather than its prominent figures.
Today’s problems, however, are no longer in the scope of the capacity of a single nation. Rather, their ever-growing complexity takes multilateral cooperation. According to Segbers, institutions like the European Union are more important than ever to guarantee peace, freedom, security and prosperity – despite their many flaws and own challenges. Moreover, the rising potential of a military conflict between China and the USA, serves as another example of the world drifting out of the rule-based system we know. “In the future, In the future, it will be essential to learn how to deal with this unregulated world order”, Segbers said.
Prof. Dr. Klaus Segbers holds the Chair of Eastern European Studies at the Otto-Suhr-Institute at the Free University of Berlin and is the Director of the Center for Global Politics.