Our research seeks to break away from certain conventional understandings of global governance. Traditionally, discussions revolve around specific domains such as ‘health governance’ and ‘global environmental governance.’ However, the underlying assumptions of these approaches no longer hold in the face of renewed geopolitical competition, power transitions, and contested globalization. In this context, successfully managing future shocks necessitates a more interdependent and integrated approach. Our research challenges existing approaches by examining how specialized sectoral domains were constructed and how they connect to larger social, economic configurations, and technological dynamics. This shift is crucial for understanding the norms and practices of global management, redefining what the management of shocks entails and for whom.

Our research asserts that anticipating future shocks cannot be confined to specific types, be it refugee crises, armed conflicts, pandemics, or climate change. Furthermore, the responsibility for international management cannot be solely assigned to individual agencies like the WHO, the IMF, or the ICRC. A more interconnected and interdependent approach is essential to better understand the processes of shock management on a global scale.