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  • Author: Jorge L Contreras
  • Publication Date: 04-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: In recent years, high-pro le lawsuits involving standards- essential patents (SEPs) have made headlines in the United States, Europe and Asia, leading to a heated public debate regarding the role and impact of patents covering key interoperability standards. Enforcement agencies around the world have investigated and prosecuted alleged violations of competition law and private licensing commitments in connection with SEPs. Yet, while the debate has focused broadly on standardization and patents in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector, commentators have paid little attention to differences among technology layers within ICT. A review of case statistics shows that patent ling and assertion activity is substantially lower for Internet- related standards than for standards relating to telecommunications and other computing technologies. This paper analyzes historical and social factors that may have contributed to this divergence, focusing on the two principal Internet standards bodies: the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). It offers a counternarrative to the dominant account portraying standards and SEPs as necessarily fraught with litigation and thereby in need of radical systemic change. Instead, it shows how standards policies that de-emphasize patent monetization have led to lower levels of disputes and litigation. It concludes by placing recent discussions of patenting and standards within the broader context of openness in network technologies and urges both industry participants and policy makers to look to the success of Internet standardization in a patent-light environment when considering the adoption of future rules and policies.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, International Security, Information Age
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: John Young
  • Publication Date: 07-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: The Human Security Baseline Assessment (HSBA) for Sudan and South Sudan is a multi-year project administered by the Small Arms Survey. It was developed in cooperation with the Canadian government, the United Nations Mission in Sudan, the United Nations Development Programme, and a wide array of international and Sudanese partners. Through the active generation and dissemination of timely, empirical research, the project supports violence reduction initiatives, including disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration programmes, incentive schemes for civilian arms collection, as well as security sector reform and arms control interventions across Sudan and South Sudan. The HSBA also offers policy-relevant advice on redressing insecurity.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, United Nations, International Security, Reform, UNDP
  • Political Geography: Sudan, South Sudan
  • Author: Eric G. Berman, Kerry Maze
  • Publication Date: 06-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: The UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (PoA) provides an increasingly critical framework for governments and civil society. Armed groups continue to illegally access and use illegal weapons to mount mass attacks on civilians and terrorize cities and communities, commit human rights violations and banditry, and incite and prolong armed conflicts. Some 60 million people are displaced due to war and insecurity (UNHCR, 2016). Armed attacks and kidnappings directed at humanitarian workers are at record highs. Armed groups are increasingly disregarding international humanitarian law and, as a result, are blocking much needed assistance to populations at risk.1 The vast majority of deaths from armed violence do not occur in conflict settings, however. Of the more than 500,000 lives that are lost annually to armed violence, in some countries small arms––many of them illicit––are used in more than three out of four homicides (Geneva Declaration Secretariat, 2015).
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, International Security, Governance, Weapons , UNDP
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 05-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: In September 2015 UN member states adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which replaced the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) (2000–15) with a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets. While reaffirming core MDG aims, such as poverty reduction and the promotion of health care and education, these SDGs and targets tackle a much broader range of factors driving underdevelopment, includ- ing violence and insecurity (UNGA, 2015a).
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, United Nations, International Security, Military Strategy, Peacekeeping, Military Affairs, Weapons , Sustainable Development Goals
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 04-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: While it was in power the Qaddafi regime tightly regulated the Libyan domestic arms trade, and local black market sales were virtually unheard of. Supplies were constrained as well—international sanctions prohibited the legal importation of arms into Libya from 1992 to 2003.1 Even when sanctions were lifted in September 2003 and international arms exports began to flow again (supplementing the Qaddafi regime’s already massive government arsenal), the domestic arms trade was stagnant (Jenzen-Jones and McCollum, forthcoming). The Libyan revolution deposed the Qaddafi regime in 2011 and with it brought to an end the Libyan state’s regulation of the arms trade. Military stockpiles were raided, and small arms and light weapons made their way into the hands of non-state armed groups and private sellers.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, International Security, Military Strategy, Non State Actors, Sanctions, Military Affairs, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Libya
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: This iconic line from the 2005 film Lord of War conveys widely held assumptions about international arms traffickers: that they are ambitious, well-connected, globe-trotting entre-preneurs who single-handedly arm criminals and militias throughout the world. The film’s fictional protagonist, Yuri Orlov, is based on five actual arms dealers, including Russian businessman Viktor Bout, whose vast global network of shell companies and unsavoury clients earned him the moniker ‘the Merchant of Death’ (Gilchrist, 2005). The composite image of Bout and his peers has become the archetypal arms trafficker, the image that comes to mind whenever the illicit arms trade is discussed. Yet most arms traffickers bear little resemblance to that image.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, International Security, Military Strategy, Mass Media, Military Affairs, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: Since the Panel on United Nations Peace Operations released its seminal report in 2000, UN missions have grown considerably in size and com- plexity. As of November 2015, more than 100,000 uniformed personnel were serving in UN peace operations—a three-fold increase since 2000 and a 50 per cent rise since 2005 (UNDPKO, 2005; UNGA and UNSC, 2015b, p. 20). These troops, military observers, and police officers increasingly operate in large, underdeveloped countries, alongside violent armed groups that show little interest in political compromise and have few compunctions about attacking UN forces (UNGA and UNSC, 2015b, pp. 21–22). Succeeding in these environments requires that peacekeepers be well trained and well armed.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Politics, United Nations, International Security, Military Strategy, Peacekeeping, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Jennifer Cafarella
  • Publication Date: 01-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for the Study of War
  • Abstract: The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) and the Critical Threats Project (CTP) at the American Enterprise Institute conducted an intensive multi-week planning exercise to frame, design, and evaluate potential courses of action that the United States could pursue to defeat the threat from the Islamic State in Iraq and al Sham (ISIS) and al Qaeda in Iraq and Syria. ISW and CTP will publish the findings of this exercise in multiple reports. The first report examined America’s global grand strategic objectives as they relate to the threat from ISIS and al Qaeda.[1] This second report defines American strategic objectives in Iraq and Syria, identify the minimum necessary conditions for ending the conflicts there, and compare U.S. objectives with those of Iran, Russia, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia in order to understand actual convergences and divergences. The differences mean that the U.S. cannot rely heavily on international partners to achieve its objectives. Subsequent reports will provide a detailed assessment of the situation on the ground in Syria and present the planning group’s evaluation of several courses of action.
  • Topic: International Security
  • Political Geography: Syria
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for the Study of War
  • Abstract: The Afghanistan ORBAT (PDF) describes the location and area of responsibility of all American units in Afghanistan, down to the battalion level, updated as of February 2016..
  • Topic: International Security
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan
  • Author: Yitzhak Shichor
  • Publication Date: 09-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for International and Regional Studies: CIRS
  • Abstract: Since the early 1960s when Taiwanese officials met Professor Ernst David Bergmann, the first chairman of the Israel Atomic Energy Commission, he played a significant role in Taiwan’s nuclear (and missile) programs. In Taiwan, which he visited occasionally and maintained close relations with President Chiang Kai-shek and its military-technological-scientific complex, Bergmann also facilitated some of Israel’s conventional military transfers to Taiwan. While some of his activities in Taiwan may have been approved by the Israeli Ministry of Defense (which followed its own foreign policy), the Foreign Ministry took exception, well before Jerusalem’s rapprochement with Beijing. Israel’s military relations with the Republic of China (ROC, Taiwan) had been aborted by the mid-1990s, even though attempts have been made to resume defense links. Since his death in 1975—one day after Chiang Kai-shek’s—and definitely before, Ernst Bergmann has been considered, implicitly but lately explicitly, a prominent player in Taiwan’s defense modernization and one of the forefathers of its nuclear program.
  • Topic: International Security, Military Affairs, Nuclear Power, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Israel, Taiwan