Accumulating Authority in International Meta-Organizations
To understand why potential members decide to join meta-organizations, it is necessary to analyze how meta-organizations build themselves and present themselves as accumulations of authority, which can be utilized by the members. This paper focuses on a case study concerning the International Association of National Public Health Institutes (IANPHI), which was established in 2006 and quickly gained a membership of 100 National Public Health Institutes (NPHIs) from 88 countries. Our case study examines the activities of the meta-organization and the rationales it offers for prospective members to join the IANPHI. We identify five distinct mechanisms, through which the IANPHI accumulates epistemic capital, making itself an attractive body for NPHIs throughout the world. The paper also looks at the more general implications these mechanisms have for the construction and spread of global models and for the dynamics between local and international organizations.