A1 Journal article (refereed)
The Politics of Explanatory Nationalism and the Evolution of the United Nations Agenda on Multinational Enterprises (2020)
Политика объяснительного национализма и эволюция повестки дня ООН по транснациональным корпорациям

Eskelinen Teppo, Ylönen Matti. (2020). The Politics of Explanatory Nationalism and the Evolution of the United Nations Agenda on Multinational Enterprises. Vestnik mezhdunarodnih organizatsii, 15(3), 176-201. https://doi.org/10.17323/1996-7845-2020-03-07

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsEskelinen Teppo; Ylönen Matti

Journal or seriesVestnik mezhdunarodnih organizatsii



Publication year2020

Publication date01/11/2020


Issue number3

Pages range176-201

PublisherNational Research University, Higher School of Economics (HSE)

Publication countryRussian Federation

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessOpenly available

Publication channel open accessOpen Access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/74028


Social problems in the global South are often explained by reference to domestic decisions or “institutional quality” in the Southern countries, while there are also prominent criticisms of such “nationalist explanations”. Crucially, the dispute over correct mode of explanation is not only epistemological, but also political, as has been often noted in analyses of hegemony. This paper develops such ideas about “hegemonic” forms of explanation by analysing how an explanatory tendency becomes institutionalised in the operating logic of international organisations. We analyse as a case study the long-term developments within the UN in the field of multinational enterprises (MNEs). We follow the process in which an agenda focused on the regulation of MNEs shifted into the direction of focusing on local institutional quality and emphasising “partnerships” instead of regulation. The analysis demonstrates how political momentum and external challenges affect explanatory tendencies, and generally the deep impact of organisational embeddedness of these tendencies.

Keywordssocietal changesocial problemspolitical institutionsinternational corporationsinternational organisationshegemonycorruptiondevelopment research

Free keywords explanatory nationalism; multinational enterprises; United Nations

Contributing organizations

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2020

JUFO rating1

Last updated on 2024-03-04 at 20:26