Is Global Capitalism Governable?: Exploring the Legal, Social, and Economic Complexities of Governance in the 21st Century


September 9, 2021

After the collapse of the socialist system, there seem to be no viable alternative to capitalism: A system based on private ordering of economic relations backed and arbitered by state-law and state courts, respectively. The quest for further economic and financial integration has fueled legal change and adaptations that enabled private parties to engage in transnational economic activities. Countries opened their borders for trading goods and to capital flows with few restrictions placed on volume, origin, use, or exit. They increased the options for private parties to choose the law of jurisdictions that best suited their needs and sanctioned new entity structures, financial intermediaries and assets that emerged within the gaps left by existing rules and regulations. The global capitalist system that has emerged from this interplay of state law and private legal ordering has reached a level of complexity that defies conventional governance approaches. Indeed, one might ask whether global capitalism has become ungovernable.

This event is a part of Columbia Academy on Law in Global Affairs (CALGA), a series of online open-access events, in which Columbia Law School faculty present their research and debate current issues with colleagues from around the globe.

CALGA is cosponsored by Columbia Law School, the Parker School of Foreign and Comparative Law, The Committee on Global Thought, and Columbia | Global Centers.

Date: September 17, 2021

Time: 9.30AM - 10:45AM

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About the Speakers

Katharina Pistor

Katharina Pistor is the Edwin B. Parker Professor of Comparative Law at Columbia Law School, where she teaches, corporations, law and development and law and finance in theory and practice.

Olabisi Akinkugbe

Olabisi D. Akinkugbe is an Assistant Professor & the Viscount Bennett Professor of Law at the Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University where he teaches contracts,  international trade law, international human rights and law and development. He researches in these areas and international investment law as well as international courts as they relate to Africa. He is a founding editor of


Mariana Pargendler is Professor of law at FGV Law School in Sao Paulo, where she teaches corporate law, contract law, law and economics, and business law and development. 


Rashmi Venkatesan is an Assistant Professor of Law at National Law School of India University and has been working in the field of human rights and development for more than a decade. Before joining NLSIU in 2016, she worked with international and domestic non-garments, leather and electronics. She has extensive experience in working with business and human rights issues, international labour standards and code of conduct, corporate social responsibility, international trade and economic law, and human rights. 


Angela Zhang is an associate professor of law and director of the Center of Chinese Law at the University of Hong Kong, where she teaches Chinese antitrust and platform governance and regulation. 

For more information, contact NIck Pozek by calling 2128540685 or send an email to