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  • Author: Bohdana Dimitrovova
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: This paper looks at the dynamics affecting the development of civil society in Morocco within the context of the European Neighbourhood Policy. It explores cooperation mechanisms in three domains of civil society endeavour – women's rights, human rights and socio-economic rights. In each area, the paper examines the kinds of mechanisms and opportunities emerging for the promotion of civil society, and which forms of action and stances taken by civil society have been encouraged (or otherwise). The paper contends that the development of civil society has triggered different responses by the state and international community. While civil and political rights have preoccupied domestic and international actors, socio-economic rights have long been absent from their agendas. Yet it is argued here that shifting responsibility for issues in the socio-economic domain to civil society is highly problematic under the current circumstances of state building, and poses risks of further ruptures in Moroccan society.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Human Rights, Islam
  • Political Geography: Europe, North Africa, Morocco
  • Author: Sébastien Peyrouse
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Agriculture constitutes one of the main sectors in the economies of Central Asia: cotton production and export, mainly in Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, and to a lesser extent in Kazakhstan and Tajikistan; a booming grain sector in Kazakhstan; and a long tradition of vegetable cultivation throughout the region. The agrarian question is a sensitive one since the population is still predominantly rural in four of the five republics (all except Kazakhstan) and because food safety is not ensured in the two poorest states (Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan). Land reform would be a priority for the growth of investment, increased productivity, and, consequently, the reduction of rural unemployment and poverty. However, pressed by the choice of cotton versus self-sufficiency in food production, the Central Asian states remain hesitant. They must also manage many structural problems, including high levels of corruption in the agrarian administrative organs, the opacity of decisionmaking structures for the export of production, quasi-slavery in some impoverished rural areas, child labour, and serious environmental problems related to the overuse of the soil.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Asia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan
  • Author: Michael Cohen
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The New School Graduate Program in International Affairs
  • Abstract: The intensive efforts of the World Bank and other urban lending programs focused on the immediate physical needs of housing and urban services rather than considering cities as sites of value creation, income generation, or productivity—an urbanization model of high urban population growth shaped this focus. Such urban planning and policy need to be considered in terms of its intention and how objectives implicitly and explicitly address the issue of context. Moreover, lessons of policy and program assistance practice should be reflected in urban lending program design; their evolution and use suggest the need for more attention to context.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Poverty, Third World
  • Author: Eduardo Zimmermann
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Kellogg Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The present paper addresses several issues raised by the evolution of the electoral institutions and practices developed in nineteenth-century Argentina, and the role they played in the country's further political development. On the basis of the pioneering works of a new political history, two features of that historical process are considered in particular: first, an early consolidation of democratic principles born out of a widely shared perception of egalitarian social conditions prevalent in the River Plate provinces; second, the development of political and electoral practices that over time were to militate against the establishment of “classical” institutions of political representation. Many of the features of nineteenth-century Argentine electoral life, which would shape a particular democratic culture in the twentieth century, are thus seen as the result of a particular historical combination of early egalitarian politics with weak institutions rather than as a reflection of a strategy of exclusion and control by ruling elites or some vague “antidemocratic” cultural legacy.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Politics, Social Stratification
  • Political Geography: Argentina, Latin America
  • Author: Wolfgang Danspeckgruber
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Liechtenstein Institute on Self Determination, Princeton University
  • Abstract: Afghans and Afghanistan have faced many challenges, suffering, and destruction in the past. However time and again, they have risen after and have rebuilt. Since the 2001 Bonn Conference and the subsequent extensive international engagement in Afghanistan–both military and civilian–much has changed and much has been achieved. But today, many are not satisfied.
  • Topic: Security, Development, Human Rights, International Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Governance
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Central Asia, Asia
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Oxfam Publishing
  • Abstract: Vietnam is among the countries worst affected by the adverse effects of climate change, especially in coastal and low-land regions. Already an average of one million Vietnamese are affected annually by disasters including flooding in the Mekong Delta region. Serious droughts also affect the central coast region, Mekong Delta and mountainous areas. Climate change is recognized by the Government of Viet Nam as a major challenge, and the National Target Programme to Respond to Climate Change (NTP-RCC) was approved in December 2008.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Environment, Gender Issues
  • Political Geography: Vietnam, Southeast Asia
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Asia Society
  • Abstract: Global greenhouse gas emissions are fast approaching unsustainable and alarming levels . There is broad consensus that these emissions, caused primarily from the burning of fossil fuels, have led to global warming. it is increasingly evident that maintaining the current trajectory of greenhouse gas emissions poses wide-ranging and potentially catastrophic risks to natural systems and human welfare . it is also clear that an unprecedented level of global cooperation will be necessary to successfully confront the immense challenge of reversing the effects of climate change.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Energy Policy, Environment, Bilateral Relations, Natural Resources
  • Political Geography: United States, China
  • Author: Ashraf Ghani
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: Describing the situation in Afghanistan and Pakistan as increasingly perilous, President Obama has committed his administration to enhancing the military, governance, and economic capacity of the two countries. On March 27, 2009, he announced plans to launch a new strategy in the region: To succeed, we and our friends and allies must reverse the Taliban's gains and promote a more capable and accountable Afghan government. . . . Afghanistan has an elected government, but it is undermined by corruption and has difficulty delivering basic services to its people. The economy is undercut by a booming narcotics trade that encourages criminality and funds the insurgency. The people of Afghanistan seek the promise of a better future. Yet once again, they have seen the hope of a new day darkened by violence and uncertainty.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, Economics, Military Strategy, Governance
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan
  • Author: Eswar Prasad, Kenneth Rogoff, M. Ayhan Kose, Shang-Jin Wei
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: We review the large literature on various economic policies that could help developing economies effectively manage the process of financial globalization. Our central findings indicate that policies promoting financial sector development, institutional quality and trade openness appear to help developing countries derive the benefits of globalization. Similarly, sound macroeconomic policies are an important prerequisite for ensuring that financial integration is beneficial. However, our analysis also suggests that the relationship between financial integration and economic policies is a complex one and that there are unavoidable tensions inherent in evaluating the risks and benefits associated with financial globalization. In light of these tensions, structural and macroeconomic policies often need to be tailored to take into account country specific circumstances to improve the risk-benefit tradeoffs of financial integration. Ultimately, it is essential to see financial integration not just as an isolated policy goal but as part of a broader package of reforms and supportive macroeconomic policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Global Focus