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Intergovernmental Global Organizations and Non-Governmental Organizations


Every country in the world is part of the wider global community. Each nation’s economic strength lies in the ability to work with others. Similarly, as part of the human race, individuals can only attain maximum potential when they identify with certain groups for a common purpose. Different nations of the world cooperate to form international global organizations (IGOs), while individuals join together to establish non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The study of the two institutions is important in demonstrating their relevance in world politics.

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Intergovernmental Global Organizations

IGOs have distinctive characteristics that make them reliable institutions in furthering a nation’s interests. Uniquely, they are formed with the aims of solving specific problems that are common to the member states (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). However, most countries tend to be united in an organization that addresses their economic needs. In streamlining own operations, IGOs hold regular meetings and have established policies for making decisions. Additionally, IGOs conduct daily activities through an official office headquarters staff or a permanent secretariat. (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Notably, IGOs differ extensively in size, objectives, management structures, and membership requirements. Only thirty-four IGOs can be classified as international organizations and at most thirty-six can be referred to as the universal membership IGOs (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). The variation in the institutions in every subdivision is crucial, particularly with single-serving, restricted-membership IGOs. Nonetheless, many IGOs target certain socio-economic affairs of unprecedented concern to them, such as control of business or carriage (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Therefore, IGOs provide the platform for socio-economic engagement between nations.

There are distinguished IGOs that have contributed immensely to the political and socio-economic statuses of their members. Among these pre-eminent IGOs is the United Nations (UN) which is a globally recognized organization. From its inception, peace, and security feature mostly among the agenda of the UN. What differentiates the UN from other organizations is its nearly worldwide membership, presently including 193 states over the Global North and South (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Beyond the UN, another institution, World Trade Organization (WTO) is active globally. The Great Depression of 1929 informed the decision by USA to create such an institution that would prevent another crisis by fostering global commerce (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Moreover, World Bank (WB) falls in the category of the notable IGOs too. In July 1944, forty-four countries created the WB at a conference in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Originally, the bank was formed to support post-World War II reconstruction efforts in Europe (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). In essence, economic development, peace, security and stability in some of the nations can be attributed to the preeminent IGOs.

Non-governmental organizations

Organizations that are not related to states, and operate as links between those who have resources and some specific vulnerable groups are classified as NGOs. Customarily, such intersocietal organizations mediate among and between nations to bring agreements for international governance on issues of global public policy (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). NGOs are always inspired by their core principles and interests. Further, they also possess a similarity to IGOs by having variant sizes and aims. For instance, some NGOs have little membership, in the hundreds; others are enormous with numbers running to millions. Amnesty International is the largest NGO having over 3,000,000 members outspread in nearly 150 nations (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). NGOs span every feature of civil, governmental and money-making activity in the present world, starting from natural sciences to tribal unity, health services, dialects, human past, traditional customs, indoctrination, theism, law, morality and defense (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). In general, the social image that is always projected by NGOs has made them adaptable in world communities.

Many individuals are quickly realizing the importance of aligning themselves to key protuberant NGOs to influence international decision making. Firstly, ethnic groupings form the most active NGOs in the world today. Individuals who think patriotically are more likely to pledge their allegiance to a politically ethnic group because they perceive themselves to be bound by common culture and language (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Secondly, transnational religious movements, remain to be an international force for global peace. More precisely, religion encompasses structure of beliefs by a clique of people that gives its members set of principles to judge their behaviors (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Thirdly, multinational corporations (MNCs) are a crucial type of NGOs. The corporations have grown conclusively in their extent and impact with the development of the world economy since World War II (Blanton & Kegley, 2020). Lastly, issue advocacy groups are another sort of NGOs, whose activities have risen above unprecedented levels. Examples of such organizations include Greenpeace, Amnesty International (AI), Doctors Without Borders (DWB), and many others. Clearly, NGOs are empowerment tools to initiate transformation in international issues.


In summary, the study of NGOs and IGOs is pertinent to global politics. As IGOs, are purposefully formed to solve problems that face the member states, their objectives are witnessed through the three major organizations: UN, WTO and WB. However, some organizations are formed to act as a link between entrepreneurs or people with resources and the target groups; the institutions are wholly NGOs. The visible NGOs are the issue advocacy groups such as the AI. Therefore, IGOs, as well as NGOs, are always best placed to influence global decision-making.


Blanton, S., & Kegley, C. (2020). World politics: Trend and transformation (17th ed.). Cengage Learning.

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