, Volume 86, Number 3

Eric Helleiner

The 2007-2008 global financial crisis encouraged speculation about the prospects for a 'Bretton Woods moment' in which the global financial system would be radically redesigned. Many of those hoping for this outcome have since become disillusioned with the limited nature of the international financial reform agenda. But the success and innovation of the Bretton Woods conference was made possible by unique political conditions that are not present today, notably concentrated power in the state system; a transnational expert consensus; and wartime conditions.

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