Abstract

This paper assesses measures taken or under consideration to reform the international monetary and financial system.1 The analysis of efforts to strengthen the international financial architecture, as these initiatives are colloquially known, has grown into a considerable industry.2 The literature is now so large and unruly as to all but elude systematic assessment. I therefore organize my analysis around a pair of questions. First, how meaningful are the changes to the international financial architecture currently underway—are they merely cosmetic or do they constitute a significant attempt to modify the structure and management of the international financial system? Second, do the initiatives under consideration address Asia’s concerns with, inter alia, the volatility of financial markets, the structure of policy conditionality, and the operation of the exchange rate system?