How do influential social ideas contribute to global governance? This book takes an original approach to international relations by looking at the way social ideas help to portray the world in a particular way. Jonathan Joseph begins by analysing the role of important concepts such as globalisation, global civil society, social capital, networks and risk; then examines the role these concepts play in the discourse of international organisations. Using the concept of governmentality, he argues that contemporary social theories help justify contemporary forms of governance. By comparing organisations like the EU and the World Bank, Joseph investigates the extent to which these ideas are influential in theory and in practice.