The Four Tools are conceptually related to Steps Two and Three. The first two tools are designed to help “strengthen the state-based part of the system where its rules and capacities are inadequate, while expanding the geometry of cooperation to capitalize on the wider availability of non-state expertise and resources." 1 The third and fourth tools provide the means to “deploy this augmented institutional geometry in a results-oriented push to accelerate progress on individual priority challenges.” 2
Tool One focuses on changing the legal practices of intergovernmental organizations and the rules for engaging ‘non-state’ actors in the delivery of technical assistance by the UN system. It is usually phrased as "Extending Intergovernmental Norms and Legal Frameworks."
The scope of Tool One is modified in its two different places in the overview essay changing "norms and ... frameworks" to "laws and institutions." The action component in Tool One is also modified in the text. The initial reference calls for the legal frameworks to be "“extended”; in a later section, it calls for “creating” these norms and frameworks. There is no explanation provided for these changes.
The specific examples cited by GRI of the use of Tool One are creating a global systemic financial risk watchdog and changes for IMF’s Articles of Agreement on expanding international liquidity. With the sole exception of proposals about marine matters, the GRI provides no concrete examples of ‘extending intergovernmental norms and standards’ in any of the social, environmental, human rights, or labor fields. The only references to strengthening institutions involve the World Bank, IMF, 3 and ILO.
Tool Two calls for enhancing the capacity and functions of existing international institutions. The primary aim of Tool Two "Reinforce the Capacity of Intergovernmental Institutions" appears to be to garner acceptance for the idea that non-state actors can make a positive contribution to the inter-state system. Like Tool One, Tool Two appears in slightly different ways in the text. The initial call is for "reinforcing the capacity" of IGOs; in its second iteration it seeks to "upgrade the mandate and capacity" of IGOs.
All the examples for applications of Tool Two focus on the monetary and financial institutions, except for one set of proposals involving the ILO. The report contains no specific proposals to change the mandate of any UN system body. There is one proposal to change the mandate for an OECD subsidiary body. 4
The Readers' Guide welcomes commentary – critical or otherwise – of the above interpretation of GRI’s perspective and the issues involved.