Welcome to the NestIOr research project

International organisations are currently under pressure. The World Health Organization was heavily criticized over its handling of the 2014 Ebola outbreak. The World Trade Organization seems incapable of mitigating an American-Chinese trade war. The United States quit UNESCO in 2018 and The United Kingdom will exit the EU in 2019. The ultimate way for states to show that international organisations have outlived their purpose is to disband them. This happens frequently: no less than a third of the international organisations created between 1905 and 2005 have formally ceased to exist.

This large research project seeks to complete the theory on the ‘life and death of international organisations’. We know how international organisations are designed and develop over time. Yet we know virtually nothing about decline and death. The project therefore addresses the question why do international organisations decline or die? The main hypothesis is that some international organisations live longer due to their institutional characteristics. Through a mixed-methods research approach, this project aims to develop an institutional theory on the final stage in the life of international organisations.


Postdoctoral Researcher International Organizations (Quantitative Methods)

Forthcoming articles

Maria Debre and Hylke Dijkstra (2021). Institutional design for a post-liberal order: Why some international organizations live longer than others. European Journal of International Relations, forthcoming.

Leonard Schuette (2021). Forging Unity: European Commission Leadership in the Brexit Negotiations. Journal of Common Market Studies, forthcoming.

Recent working papers

Leonard Schuette (2020). International Organisations’ responses to hegemonic contestation: NATO’s Trump Management Strategy. ECPR General Conference, 24-28 August.

Maria Debre and Hylke Dijkstra (2020). Covid-19 and policy responses by international organizations: Crisis of liberal international order or window of opportunity? NestIOr Working Paper, 5 July 2020.

Hylke Dijkstra and Maria Debre (2020). Causes of death of major international organizations: When institutional stickiness is not enough. NestIOr Working Paper, 22 June 2020.