The Oxford Handbook of Transformations of the state
The state remains the most important political unit of the modern world. In the most recent phase of globalization the role and position of the state has changed, but after a short intermezzo in which nothing less than the ‘end of the state’ was frequently proclaimed, the social sciences have reached consensus about the ongoing centrality of states. The Oxford Handbook of Transformations of the State focuses on state transformations. Transformations are fundamental changes of the state. We take into consideration the entire period from the emergence of the nation-state in Europe to the present but we concentrate on state transformations over the past four decades. This Handbook presents the latest social science knowledge about the state and its transformations along with issues for further research. Transformations of the state are considered for all regions of the world, for countries in economically advanced and less developed regions, for young states and those which can look back at a long tradition of state development, for democratic states and authoritarian regimes, for countries with (previously) socialist economic systems and the states where the idea of liberal market economies originated, for states with a colonial past and their erstwhile colonial masters. It is challenging and ambitious to examine such a wide range of states and their transformations, even in an extensive Handbook profiting from the participation of a large number of leading experts. The University of Bremen’s Transformations of the State Collaborative Research Center (TranState, 2003-1014) served as the institutional, intellectual and administrative home for the preparation of this concluding Handbook. Funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation) TranState comprises some eighty researchers from all disciplines of the social sciences. Together, they have defined the multi-faceted modern state in four intersecting dimensions: resources, or control of the use of force and revenues; law, or jurisdiction and the courts; legitimacy, or the acceptance of political rule by the populace; welfare, or the facilitation of economic growth and social equality. The Oxford Handbook of the Welfare State (2010, 2012) focused on the welfare dimension, and The Oxford Handbook of Transformations of the State (2015, 2017) provides a multi-dimensional view of the state as a notion governance and how it has developed under globalization.