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There are a large number of issues debated in the global justiceliterature concerning migration, whether temporary, permanent, legal orillegal. These include: Should states have the right to controltheir borders? Even if they have such a right, should states bemore generous in admitting would-be migrants, especially consideringthe facts about global disparities in life prospects? Whenaffluent developed states refuse to open their borders to theeconomically disadvantaged, is this equivalent to members of thearistocracy unjustly protecting their privilege as was the case infeudal times? What responsibilities are there to admit morerefugees? Can illegal immigration be justified under certaincircumstances? What sorts of criteria may affluent developedcountries use when selecting migrants from the pool of applicants forcitizenship? May they legitimately consider how prospectivemigrants would fit in with current citizens, favoring certainreligious, linguistic, or ethnic affiliations to managecompatibility? When making migrant selection decisions, shouldthey consider the effects on those who remain in countries of originand if so, is this fair to the would-be migrants who would be excludedon grounds of the alleged negative impacts for home countrycitizens? If states admit migrant workers, are there moralconstraints on how they should be treated? Would admittingtemporary workers without simultaneously allowing them a pathway tocitizenship be unjust? What responsibilities do we have inrelation to human trafficking?

Global Justice: Seminal Essays ..

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Global Justice Seminal Essays Table Contents

A distinction is often drawn between global and internationaljustice. The key point of difference between these two notionsinvolves clarifying the entities among which justice is sought. Ininternational justice the nation or state is taken as the centralentity of concern and justice among nations or states is the focus. Inthe domain of global justice, by contrast, theorists do not seekprimarily to define justice between states or nations. Ratherthey drill down through the state shell and inquire about what justiceamong human beings consists in. Global justice inquiries takeindividual human beings as of primary concern and seek to give anaccount of what fairness among such agents involves. There are a rangeof actions that cut across states or involve different agents,relationships, and structures that might be invisible in an inquiryseeking justice among states exclusively. Many different kinds ofinteractions are not circumscribed by state membership and yet canimportantly affect human beings’ most fundamental interests, soasking the question about what individual human beings owe one anotheroften uncovers significant neglected features of relationships andstructures that are of normative concern. Global justice analyses arenot precluded from yielding state-level obligations; indeed, theytypically do. However, they consider a wider array of possible agentsand organizations that might have duties as well.

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Theories of global justice aim to help us understand our worldbetter and what our responsibilities are in it. While sometheorists aim purely at theoretical understanding, others hope also toprovide an analysis that can be useful in practical policy makingconcerning global justice matters.

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Defenders of Rawls’s views argue that his position is morecomplex than is commonly acknowledged and allows for both a principledstance on some fundamental values along with appropriate openness toalternative ways in which legitimate and decent peoples might organizetheir collective lives (Reidy 2004, Freeman 2006). They argue thatRawls’s position shows great sensitivity to a number of factorsthat must be weighed in considering right conduct in internationalaffairs. For instance, when Rawls makes his bold claims about thecauses of wealth it is useful to bear in mind the context in which heis arguing. Against an assumption that resources are enormouslyimportant for a society’s ability to flourish, Rawls emphasizesthe importance of strong institutions, political culture and otherlocal factors, in sustaining decent lives for citizens. Rawls alsoreflects on the difficulty of changing political culture, noting thatsimply transferring resources will not help. Interestingly, in alittle discussed passage, Rawls ventures that an “emphasis onhuman rights may work to change ineffective regimes and the conduct ofrulers who have been callous about the well-being of their ownpeople” (Rawls 1999, p. 109). For more on whether Rawls providesus with a cogent model that can provide sage guidance in international matters see the entry on and the entry on . See also Martin andReidy (2006). For the purposes of this entry we need only summarizesome key questions that were influential in setting the terms ofdiscussion about global justice for some time.

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In contrast to the idea of responsibility as involving finding faultand individual liability, Iris Marion Young develops a forward-lookingmodel which she argues is more appropriate. She draws on the ideathat participation via institutions sometimes produces injustice, so wehave particular responsibilities to address injustice. We shareresponsibility for remedying injustice but we may have differentdegrees and kinds of responsibility. She offers differentparameters of reasoning that can help individuals and organizationsdecide what might make the most sense for them to do in efforts toremedy injustice, given that there are so many injustices, whereas timeand resources are limited. Using the case study of theglobal apparel industry she illustrates how the fact that we arepositioned differently can entail varying but importantresponsibilities for all who participate in activities that sustainsweatshops. There are at least four parameters that agents canuse in their reasoning:

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Within the field of global justice, issues concerning war have one ofthe longest histories. The just war framework has been influential insetting the terms of much debate about the proper use of force ininternational affairs. Aristotle, Cicero, Augustine and Thomas Aquinasoffered some of the earliest accounts of the criteria that should bemet for war to be justified. Two areas have been especially thoroughlystudied (1) the conditions under which entry into the war is justified(Jus Ad Bellum) and (2) the conditions for fair conductwithin the war (Jus In Bello). While having a just cause isstandardly held to be a necessary condition for a war to be justified,it is not sufficient. Theorists often disagree about which additionalconditions must be satisfied for a war to be characterized as a justwar. The most common additional conditions proposed are that the warshould be undertaken by a proper authority, with the right intentions,when the war would follow requirements of proportionality (the ends tobe secured would warrant going to war), only as a last resort, andwhen there are reasonable prospects of success. On traditionalaccounts of just war theory all conditions must be met, but morecontemporary theorists challenge whether they are all necessary(Mellow 2006, Moellendorf 2002).