How is the world organized politically? How should it be organized? What forms of political organization are required to deal with such global challenges as climate change, terrorism, or nuclear proliferation? Drawing on work in international law, international relations and global governance, this book provides a clear and wide-ranging introduction to the analysis of global political order - how patterns of governance and institutionalization in world politics have already changed; what the most important challenges are; and what the way forward might look like. The first section develops three analytical frameworks: a world of sovereign states capable of only limited cooperation; a world of ever-denser international institutions embodying the idea of an international community; and a world in which global governance moves beyond the state and into the realms of markets, civil society and networks.Part II examines five of the most important issues facing contemporary international society: nationalism and the politics of identity; human rights and democracy; war, violence and collective security; the ecological challenge; and the management of economic globalization in a highly unequal world. Part III considers the idea of an emerging multi-regional system; and the picture of global order built around US empire. The conclusion looks at the normative implications. If international society has indeed been changing in the ways discussed in this book, what ought we to do? And, still more crucially, who is the 'we' that is to be at the centre of this drive to create a morally better world? This book is concerned with the fate of international society in an era of globalization and the ability of the inherited society of sovereign states to provide a practically viable and normatively acceptable framework for global political order. It lays particular emphasis on the different forms of global inequality and the problems of legitimacy that these create and on the challenges posed by cultural diversity and value conflict.