Faculty of Political Sciences, Belgrade
CONTEMPORARY TENDENCIES IN THE DECISION - MAKING PROCESS IN INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS: THE USE OF CONSENSUS AND ITS LIMITATIONS
This paper analyses contemporary trends in the development of decision - making procedures that are in line with the evolutionary nature of international organizations. Consensus as a decision-making procedure was created in order to correct the shortcomings of unanimous and majority voting, which were the dominant procedures in the first two periods of development of international organizations. The paper analyzes the widespread use of consensus in international organizations, its advantages and disadvantages as well as the process of its institutionalization. Additionally, the paper quantifies the use of consensus in the United Nations, showing that it’s a growing trend. Given the fact that consensus, in a number of cases, is an informal form of decision-making, the paper uses New institutionalism as an approach to studying the problem. In this way, the outcomes produced by these informal institutions are also taken into account. The paper makes a tangible contribution to the analysis of the use of consensus as a decision-making procedure in the United Nations as well as its use in the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, especially as an example of an organization that uses consensus as the only decision-making procedure.