A Federalist Journal for World Citizenship

June 6, 2023

An Appeal to national leaders and international institutions

The coronavirus pandemic has caused a global health and economic crisis that requires global solutions. However, the national-international structure is unable to offer an adequate response to it. Thought leaders around the world – Saskia Sassen, Daniele Archibugi, Mary Burton, Garret Brown, Susan George,Richard Sennett, Erna Paris, Fernando Savater, Loris Zanatta, among others – have signed this documentdemanding to political leaders and international institutions to strengthen the UN system, the World Health Organizationand the international existing weak structure as well, applying the principles of federalism and democracy worldwide. It’s a crucial moment for democracy across the globe. We can’t be out of the field. 

Camila Lopez Badra

(for further information and for signing please go to


  • The current coronavirus crisis requires global cooperation and solutions which the existing national/inter-national political system is incapable of delivering. Seven billion human beings are now living in a world globalized by the economy and technology but divided into almost 200 national states which adopt separate measures with scarce coordination and effectiveness. The Covid-19 pandemic shows each of them prioritizing their own vision and interests, which causes unnecessary damage to the world economy and the global society, and costs thousands of human lives.
  • By definition, national states are unable to deal with global issues. Their failures don’t just affect their own citizens but have spill-over effects on all the inhabitants of this small hyper-connected planet, damaging global commons. Global coordination and policies are urgently needed to defend the global ecosystem and world public health, and to protect the economy and employment all over the planet. Of course, national sovereignty must continue to be respected for national affairs, but effective global decision making is also necessary to protect the welfare and survival of humanity as a whole.
  • To effectively tackle pandemics such as Covid-19, we need concrete binding action at the global level, such as early warning systems, information sharing, delivery and enforcement of norms, management of transmission across borders and vaccine-treatment research. Yet, while the World Health Organization (WHO) is mandated to deliver these functions at the global level, it lacks funds and enforcement mechanisms. Nowadays, 127 UN member states have still not fully complied with them due to a lack of financing and political will, the WHO can’t tackle countries that do not comply with the International Health Regulations and existing global disease control measures -such as PEF, CEF and GHSA- constitute a globally fragmented strategy, with disjointed funding, disintegrated policies and weak authority. The crisis shows that all the current health national/inter-national system is unprepared to tackle global pandemics as Covid-19, as well as world issues such as antimicrobial resistance and global warming related emergencies.
  • We the signatories of this document, some few of the seven billion world citizens, urgently ask national leaders and inter-national institutions to take lessons from the Coronavirus crisis. Let’s work together to enable a better integrated 21st Century political system, reinforcing regional institutions, reforming the United Nations and making each level of governance more representative and effective; for example, through the creation of a UN Parliamentary Assembly able to deliver world health norms, the empowerment of an International Criminal Court capable of sanctioning eventual violations, and the building of a World Health Organization equipped to respond to global health challenges.
  • We the signatories don’t propose a world state or government. National states are needed to manage national problems, but an enhanced global governance system is needed to tackle global issues such as this pandemic. Otherwise, the panic generated by insufficient national responses to recurrent global crises will continue growing discontent and anger, eroding national democracies and strengthening nationalism and populism, with their simplistic “sovereigntist” responses to complex global affairs, and their threat to human survival.
  • Humanity has become a real community of fate. Hopefully, the coronavirus pandemic has taught us how small the Earth is and how close we are to each other. The time of applying the principles of federalism and democracy to the global scale has come. Shared sovereignty, coordination and cooperation at the global level or national populism. A more federal and democratic political structure able to regulate globalization or further crises and chaos. That’s the question we face.


Abdullahi A AnNaim, Universidad Emory
Andreas Bummel, Democracy Without Borders
Bertrand Badie, Universités à Sciences Po Paris
Clara Riveros, CPLATAM Colombia
Cristian Giménez Corte, professor
Daniel Innerarity, University of the Basque Country
European University Florence
Daniele Archibugi, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche
University of London
Dena Freeman, London School of Economics and Political Science
Elver Hilal, UN Special Rapporteur on Right to Food
Erna Paris, La Sorbonne
Federico Andahazi, author
Fernando Dalla Chiesa, Universitá degli studi di Milano
Fernando Iglesias, World Federalist Movement
Fernando Savater, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Fernando Vilella, Universidad de Buenos Aires
Gabriel Palumbo, Universidad de Buenos Aires
Garrett Wallace Brown, University of Leeds
Guido Montani, University of Pavia

Gurutz Jáuregui, University of the Basque Country
Heikki Patomäki, University of Helsinki
Javier Ansuátegui Roig, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
Jorge Castro, journalist specialising in international politics
Juan Campanella, Winner Oscar
Juan José Sebreli, author
Lorenzo Marsili, University of London
Loris Zanatta, Università di Bologna
Lucio Levi, Università di Torino
Luigi Ferrajoli, philosopher
Luis Alberto Romero, historian
Luis Cabrera, Griffith University
Luis Cevasco, prosecutor
Manu Bhagavan, Hunter College
Mary Burton, author
Michele Fiorillo, CIVICO Europa

Nathalie Tocci, Istitu
to Affari Internazionali
Nissim Otmazgin, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Raffaele Marchetti, Libera Università Guido Carli
Richard Falk, Princeton University
Queen Mary University
Richard Sennett, OBE FBA London School of Economics
Sabrina Ajmechet, Universidad de Buenos Aires
Santiago Kovadloff, Academia Argentina de Letras
Saskia Sassen, Columbia University
Sreemathi Seshadrinathan, Hearts for Hearts
Susan George, author
Teivo Teivainen, University of Helsinki
Theo van Boven, Maastricht University
Tim Murithi, University of Cape Town
Vicente Palermo, CONICET
Club Político Argentino