Mary Kaldor (born 16 March 1946) is a British academic, currently Professor of Global Governance at the London School of Economics, where she is also the Director of its Centre for the Study of Global Governance. She has been a key figure in the development of cosmopolitan democracy. She writes on globalisation, international relations and humanitarian intervention, global civil society and global governance, as well as what she calls New Wars.
Before the LSE, Kaldor worked at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) and now serves on its governing board. She also worked at the Science Policy Research Unit at the University of Sussex, where she worked closely with English economist Christopher Freeman. She was a founding member of European Nuclear Disarmament, editing its European Nuclear Disarmament Journal (1983–88). She was the founder and Co-Chair of the Helsinki Citizens Assembly,and a founding member of the European Council on Foreign Relations. She also writes for OpenDemocracy.net, and belongs to the Board of Trustees of the Hertie School of Governance.
She began her career with a B.A. in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford University. She is the daughter of the economist Nicholas Kaldor. She is also the sister of Frances Stewart, Professor at the University of Oxford.
On 8 April 1993 the Guardian published a letter from Kaldor and Jeanette Buirski that read
We are holding a demonstration in London on May 9 in support of extensive UN intervention in Bosnia-Herzegovina. We call on all who support our coalition for peace in Bosnia to add your name to our appeal.
In a 2008 interview Kaldor said "The international community makes a terrible mess wherever it goes":
It is hard to find a single example of humanitarian intervention during the 1990s that can be unequivocally declared a success. Especially after Kosovo, the debate about whether human rights can be enforced through military means is ever more intense. Moreover, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which have been justified in humanitarian terms, have further called into question the case for intervention.