Queen's University

G8 summit has evolved into an ineffective 'circus'

2010-06-28

Charles Pentland, director of the Queen’s University Centre for International Relations, feels the G8 summits has evolved far away from their original intention and wonders if they are worth continuing. However, the political studies professor feels the jury is still out on the effectiveness of the G20 summits.

“The G7/8 summits started out as informal meetings between world leaders, with the hope being they could cut through the formality and bureaucracy to solve problems directly. What’s happened over the years is government officials, the press, and protestors and got hold of the summit so it has now become a circus. The G7/8 summits have produced some positive outcomes, but that’s usually been in despite of the process, not because of it,” says Professor Pentland. “The G20 includes more world leaders so it has the potential to have more impact but it is a bit early to make a call on its effectiveness.”

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