Principled Engagement? Democratic Transitions and Investment in 'Pariah' States

Tuesday July 15th 2014
BSG Board Room, 10 Merton Street

‘Pariah’ states are meant to be those that fail to live up to international norms – with respect to democracy, human rights or other standards – and thus are shunned by the global community. Yet increasingly international investors are seeing business opportunities in these ‘pariah’ states, and seeking to break into these new, largely untapped markets.

Is the term ‘pariah state’ useful? What factors do multinational corporations care most about when considering investing in fragile states, those undergoing democratic transitions, and countries shunned by the international community? What obligations do multinational corporations hold to the citizens of the countries they invest in? Can, and should, home states regulate investment flowing from Western companies into ‘pariah’ states?

On 15 July, the Global Economic Governance Programme will host a workshop on GEG Research Associate Jo Ford’s manuscript in progress on private sector investment in so-called pariah states. Jo’s manuscript will address these and other questions related to how international investors engage in countries undergoing democratic transitions.

If you would like to attend this event, please register your interest by emailing