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  • Author: Andrei Gheorghiță
  • Publication Date: 06-2016
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ethics International Affairs Journal
  • Institution: Carnegie Council
  • Abstract: In the contemporary political environment, the added value brought by leaders to the electoral performance of the parties appears to be significant and growing. However, the impact of leader evaluations on the vote choice is likely to vary from one voter to another. This article explores the influence of voter characteristics on the magnitude of leader effects in the context of the 2012 legislative elections in Romania. Five such characteristics are considered: objective political knowledge, subjective political information, party identification, political engagement, and time of voting decision. For this purpose, the paper employs data from the 2012 Romanian Election Studies (RES) three-wave panel survey. The analyses prove a significant influence of political knowledge and party identification and negligible effects of the other three voter characteristics considered. Thus, political knowledge appears to stimulate the manifestation of leader effects. Similarly, voters holding partisan ties appear to experience higher levels of personalization. The implications of these findings are discussed extensively.
  • Topic: Security, Human Welfare, Politics, Governance, Elections
  • Political Geography: Romania
  • Author: G. John Ikenberry
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: For more than half a century, the United States has played a leading role in shaping order in East Asia. This East Asian order has been organized around American military and economic dominance, anchored in the U.S. system of alliances with Japan, South Korea, and other partners across Asia. Over the decades, the United States found itself playing a hegemonic role in the region—providing security, underwriting stability, promoting open markets, and fostering alliance and political partnerships. It was an order organized around “hard” bilateral security ties and “soft” multilateral groupings. It was built around security, economic, and political bargains. The United States exported security and imported goods. Across the region, countries expanded trade, pursued democratic transitions, and maintained a more or less stable peace.
  • Topic: Security, Diplomacy, International Trade and Finance, Treaties and Agreements, Bilateral Relations, Hegemony
  • Political Geography: Japan, East Asia, South Korea
  • Author: Ann M. Lesch
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Foreign Policy Research Institute
  • Abstract: General Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, Egypt’s ruler since July 2013, brooks no dissent. Having “saved” Egypt from the Muslim Brothers, he has ruled by decree in the absence of a parliament, supported by a handpicked technocratic cabinet. His security apparatus muzzles the press, keeps dissident voices off-air, arrests secular as well as Islamist critics, and clamps down on civil society. He has built ten new prisons to accommodate the overflow, as political prisoners may now total 60,000.[1] As typical of military rulers, he announces grandiose projects – the new channel in the Suez Canal, the Dabaa nuclear power plant, million-unit agricultural and housing schemes, and a multi-billion dollar new capital city – without taking into consideration their cost, integrating them into long term plans, conducting comprehensive feasibility studies, or examining their social and environmental impact.
  • Topic: Security, Civil Society, Islam, Politics, Authoritarianism
  • Political Geography: Egypt
  • Author: Cordella Buchanan Ponczek
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Polish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Traditionally, there is a partisan split on foreign policy in the United States: Republican candidates and voters worry more about terrorism, defense and national security than Democratic candidates and voters, thereby putting more stock in foreign policy issues, which manifests itself in the aggressiveness—of lack thereof—of each party’s foreign policy platform. But the candidates in the 2016 U.S. presidential election can be categorised by more than just party: a line can also be drawn between conventional candidates—Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, and Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, Republicans—and unconventional candidates—Donald Trump, a Republican, and Bernie Sanders, a Democrat. Should a conventional candidate be elected president, U.S. foreign policy would be based on predictable adaptation to the changing international environment. An unconventional candidate, however, would be a wild card, whose actions would be difficult to predict.
  • Topic: Security, Politics, Elections
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Bobby Anderson
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: East-West Center
  • Abstract: West Papua is the most violent area of Indonesia. Indonesian security forces battle the country's last active separatist insurgency there. The majority of Indonesia's political prisoners are Papuans, and support for independence is widespread. But military repression and indigenous resistance are only one part of a complex topography of insecurity in Papua: vigilantism, clan conflict, and other forms of horizontal violence produce more casualties than the vertical conflict that is often the exclusive focus of international accounts of contemporary Papua. Similarly, Papua's coerced incorporation into Indonesia in 1969 is not unique; it mirrors a pattern of long-term annexation found in other remote and highland areas of South and Southeast Asia. What distinguishes Papua is the near-total absence of the state in indigenous areas. This is the consequence of a morass of policy dysfunction over time that compounds the insecurity that ordinary Papuans face. The author illuminates the diverse and local sources of insecurity that indicate too little state as opposed to too much, challenges common perceptions of insecurity in Papua, and offers a prescription of policy initiatives. These include the reform of a violent and unaccountable security sector as a part of a broader reconciliation process and the urgent need for a comprehensive indigenous-centered development policy.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Political Violence, Development, Politics
  • Political Geography: Indonesia
  • Author: Alan Bryden
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: Calls for greater coherence in the international community's support for security sector reform (SSR) have become commonplace. This reflects frustration at the stovepiped contributions that frequently seem to characterise international SSR engagement. Perhaps more damaging, incoherent approaches may only be the visible symptom of a more profound problem – the inability or unwillingness of the international community to engage collectively with complex political dynamics when designing and implementing SSR programmes. The nexus between difficult SSR politics and incoherent SSR support has multiple dimensions. On the one hand, an SSR process may challenge (or reinforce) inequities in power relations that exclude certain groups and interests. Competing interests therefore provide a sub-text to any reform process. On the other hand, SSR assistance from external actors is itself highly political (and is certainly viewed as such by 'recipients'). This tension is reflected in harmful accusations that SSR represents a Trojan horse for the imposition of foreign values and influence. By failing to acknowledge these political sensitivities in SSR policies and programmes, external interventions can at best have a marginal impact on national security dynamics. This Horizon Paper therefore attempts to provide additional clarity to the concept of coherence and its utility in supporting more effective SSR.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Security, Intelligence, Peacekeeping, Reform
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: Most of today's armed conflicts take place within states and are waged by at least one NSA fighting state forces and/or other NSAs. In these conflicts, frequent violations of humanitarian norms are committed by both state and non-state parties. NSAs also frequently control or heavily influence areas where civilians live. Consequently, efforts to protect civilian populations should address not only the behaviour of states, but also that of NSA.
  • Topic: Security, Intelligence, Armed Struggle, Non State Actors
  • Political Geography: Geneva
  • Author: Theodor H. Winkler, Fred Schreier, Barbara Weekes
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: The open Internet has been a boon for humanity. It has not only allowed scientists, companies and entities of all sorts to become more effective and efficient. It has also enabled an unprecedented exchange of ideas, information, and culture amongst previously unconnected individuals and groups. It has completely revolutionized on a global scale how we do business, interact and communicate.
  • Topic: Security, Intelligence, Science and Technology, Communications
  • Political Geography: Geneva
  • Author: Anne-Marie Buzatu, Benjamin S. Buckland
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: Private military and security forces, in various forms, have been around for as long as there has been war and insecurity. In the fi rst and second centuries BC, Carthaginians used Numidian mercenaries, in the fifth century the Romans used Germanic mercenaries on their northern borders, the Byzantines hired the Spanish in the fourteenth century, the English used Prussian “Hessians” in the American War of Independence, and the Swiss Guard have been providing protective services to the Vatican since 1506. These forces were used by strong regional and local powers to safeguard or expand territory or other spheres of influence under their control.
  • Topic: Security, Privatization, Non State Actors
  • Political Geography: Geneva
  • Author: Theodor H. Winkler, Fred Schreier, Benjamin S. Buckland
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: Cyber security encompasses borderless challenges, while responses remain overwhelmingly national in scope and even these are insufficient. There are enormous gaps in both our understanding of the issue, as well as in the technical and governance capabilities required to confront it. Furthermore, democratic governance concerns – particularly regarding control, oversight and transparency – have been almost entirely absent from the debate. These concerns are exacerbated by the enormous role played by private actors (both alone and in cooperation with governments) in online security of all types. Given the pace at which states and private companies are reinforcing online security and preparing for cyber war, addressing democratic governance concerns has never been more pressing. They are the primary subject of this paper.
  • Topic: Security, Intelligence, Science and Technology, Governance
  • Political Geography: Geneva