Global standards are currently being made by four categories of international players:
- the private sector (firms, professional associations, funds, banks)
- multilateral organisations
- non-state organisations (NGOs, unions, private and professional standard producers, think-tanks)
Global governance takes either the form of 'positive law' after a lobbying process (for example the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions) or the form of 'soft law', directly by the abovementioned, alone or together. This is the case of 'best practice' documentation for example. Breaking this informal law exposes to 'naming and shaming' from by NGOs and public opinion.
It should also be noted that standards producing has become a profitable business in itself for specialised institutes, especially in the ethics and compliance fields. Rankings and ratings are also subtle and efficient tools for shaping global governance. All these initiatives are little by little designing and implementing our global governance.