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  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: On 15 December 2013 the world's newest state descended into civil war. Continuing fighting has displaced more than 1,000,000 and killed over 10,000 while a humanitarian crisis threatens many more. Both South Sudanese and the international community were ill-prepared to prevent or halt the conflict: the nation's closest allies did little to mediate leadership divisions within the Sudan Peoples' Liberation Movement's (SPLM). The SPLM and its army (SPLA) quickly split along divisions largely unaddressed from the independence war. Were it not for the intervention of Uganda and allied rebel and militia groups, the SPLA would likely not have been able to hold Juba or recapture lost territory. The war risks tearing the country further apart and is pulling in regional states. Resolving the conflict requires not a quick fix but sustained domestic and international commitment. Governance, including SPLM and SPLA reform and communal relations, must be on the table. Religious and community leaders, civil society and women are critical to this process and must not be excluded.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Human Rights, International Cooperation, Governance
  • Political Geography: Africa, South Sudan
  • Author: Anne Siebert
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for Development and Peace
  • Abstract: Over the past decade, Uganda has developed strong water and sanitation sector reform policies grounded in a constitutional guarantee to the human right to water. This yielded not yet to comprehensive results in improvement of the supply situation. This Working Paper analyzes and critically evaluates this rights-based water reform process on global and national level to identify the context-specific conditions in Uganda for the successes and failures. It investigates the related policies in Uganda; and also has a look at formal and informal sectors of society. In particular, the paper asks whether and how human rights-based arrangements and strategies can serve as a model for addressing the urgent water sector challenges. Furthermore, the paper discusses how policy transfer, rights awareness, and community participation in context of water supply and sanitation might be influenced in a sustainable way.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Water, Governance
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Africa
  • Author: Malcolm Cook
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Lowy Institute for International Policy
  • Abstract: Northeast Asia is one of the most important crucibles of global economic and strategic change, and it is far from a stable one. The modern histories of China, Japan and South Korea were forged by Japan's colonisation of China and Korea and the Korean War that divided the peninsula and saw China on the side of North Korea and Japan on the side of South Korea. This recent history has left the bilateral relations on each side of this turbulent triangle strained by a lack of trust, popular antipathy and unresolved territorial disputes. As noted in the project's Beijing workshop, the stalled trilateral free trade agreement negotiations between the three Northeast Asian neighbours, launched with great hope in 1997, have been the victim of this turbulence and strain.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, Human Rights, Bilateral Relations, Territorial Disputes
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Asia, North America
  • Author: Eduardo Viola, Larissa Basso
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: In the period 2003-13 Brazil experienced important economic and political developments: it became a much more relevant international player; its economy entered the world's top ten; and society became more politically active and expressed its complaints more aggressively. Amazonian policy and the politics of the period developed in this context, and three issues played a central role. Firstly, a cutback in deforestation led to a decrease in Brazil's carbon emissions by around one-third, which is a unique situation in the world. Secondly, despite the region's hydropower potential, projects developed slowly due to new environmental requirements and societal opposition. Thirdly, the production of biofuels was greatly encouraged by the introduction of flexible-fuel vehicles technology, but lost momentum after the discovery of offshore oil reserves; and there was a heated debate about the relationship between the expansion of sugar-cane plantations and deforestation after the decline in deforestation demonstrated that such plantations were not its main cause. Analysis indicates that there were three trends in Amazonian environmental policy and politics during the decade: continuity of former policies (2003-05), an upward trend towards sustainability (2005-10) and a downward trend (2010-13). The results of the 2014 elections are key to predicting future developments.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment, Human Rights, Politics, Governance
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America
  • Author: Nick Holdstock
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: On March 1st 2014 a knife-wielding group of ten people attacked passengers and passers-by in the railway station in Kunming, capital of China's south-western Yunnan province. Twenty-eight were killed and 113 injured. By the following day the government was describing the incident as a "separatist" attack perpetrated by "terrorists from Xinjiang". The attack in Kunming is the latest in a series of violent incidents in China that the government attributes to radical Islamist organisations that aim to promote what it calls the "Three Evils" of "terrorism, separatism and religious extremism". These acts have predominantly occurred in China's far western Xinjiang region, most recently in January and February 2014. Incidents in other parts of China have been attributed to the same forces.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Communism, Economics, Human Rights, Islam
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Chris Alden
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: China is on course to becoming more deeply involved in Africa's security landscape. While the motivation behind Chinese involvement remains primarily economic, the growing exposure of its interests to the vagaries of African politics, as well as pressures to demonstrate greater global activism, are bringing about a reconsideration of Beijing's approach to the continent. China faces threats on three fronts to its standing in Africa: reputational risks derived from its assocation with certain governments; risks to its business interests posed by mecurial leaders and weak regulatory regimes; and risks faced by its citizens operating in unstable African environments. Addressing these concerns poses challenges for Beijing, whose desire to play a larger role in security often clashes with the complexities of doing so while preserving Chinese foreign policy principles and economic interests on the continent.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Africa, China, Asia
  • Author: Elling N. Tjønneland
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: Much has been written about the role of the rising or emerging powers and their accelerating economic engagement in Africa. Much less is known about how they contribute to or impact on the African peace and security agenda. This report takes a comparative look at the roles of China, India, Brazil and South African in relation to the African Union and its African Peace and Security Architecture. Each of these four countries has a distinct commercial and corporate approach to Africa, despite a shared political commitment to South-South cooperation. However, as they extend their economic engagement they are becoming more sensitive to insecurity and volatility. The Asian and Latin American countries, which traditionally have strongly emphasised non-intervention, are gradually becoming more involved in the African security agenda. They are increasingly concerned about their image and reputation and the security of their citizens and business interests, and are becoming more prepared to act multilaterally and to work with others in facilitating security and stability. As an African power, South Africa plays a more direct role and has emerged as a major architect of the continent's evolving peace and security architecture. This report summarises elements from a broader research project on rising powers and the African peace and security agenda undertaken by CMI in cooperation with NOREF.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Rights, International Cooperation, Regional Cooperation, International Security
  • Political Geography: Africa, India, Asia, South Africa, Brazil, Latin America
  • Author: Christof Hartmann
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Research Center (SFB) 700
  • Abstract: In the early 1990s, ECOWAS already committed its member states to standards of democracy and human rights. The organization developed its framework for governance transfer primarily through its 1999 and 2001 protocols in the wake of democratization processes in its member states. Overall standards are more developed in the fields of (liberal) democracy and human rights than in the rule of law and good governance. ECOWAS's instruments for protecting democracy and human rights are far-reaching, allowing for sanctions and military interventions under the so-called 'Mechanism.' By comparison, there are few instruments to actively promote governance standards beyond election observation missions. In practice, ECOWAS has generally reacted to political crises and security threats in its member states with a mixture of diplomatic interventions, fact-finding missions, and (the threat of) sanctions. These measures were mostly carried out by individual member states and only loosely linked to regional rules and procedures.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Economics, Human Rights, Regional Cooperation, Governance
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Mathis Lohaus
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Research Center (SFB) 700
  • Abstract: This case study examines to which extent the Organization of American States (OAS) engages in governance transfer to its member states. Both the standards and policies prescribed in regional documents as well as their application are analyzed. Historically, the organization has emphasized two areas. Human rights are protected through multiple treaties and a strong regional legal regime. Democracy is protected by strong incentives to avoid coups and supported via different types of assistance, including a long-standing system of election observation. The OAS addresses good governance since the 1990s, particularly with regard to combating corruption and modernizing public management. Provisions concerning the rule of law are addressed in connection with the other standards. After analyzing the framework and measures of governance transfer, this report explores how the observed patterns can be explained and briefly discusses the future prospects for the OAS.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Rights, International Cooperation, Governance
  • Political Geography: America, South America, North America
  • Author: Tania Zgajewski
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: EGMONT - The Royal Institute for International Relations
  • Abstract: Shale gas is an unconventional form of gas because its extraction is more difficult or less economical than that of conventional natural gas. It has become an important item of energy policy during the last years since new processes have allowed its extraction. In the medium term, shale gas should foster a reinforcement of the gas part in the world's energy mix. In 2011, the IEA released an influential report entitled "Are we entering a golden age of gas?" This report suggests that shale gas could help substantially boost global gas use. It also warns at the same time that this success could bring into question the international goal of limiting the long-term increase in the global temperature to 2° C above pre-industrial levels.
  • Topic: Economics, Energy Policy, Environment, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Europe