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  • Author: Lucía Ramírez Bolívar
  • Publication Date: 02-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: The incoming Biden-Harris administration has been welcomed by great expectations of impending changes in US policy after four years of the Trump presidency. Out of a wide range of issues, US foreign policy towards Latin America and the Caribbean is one domain where a shift in approach may be expected from the new administration.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Oil, Sanctions, Joe Biden
  • Political Geography: South America, Venezuela, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Sungwoo Hong, Yeo Joon Yoon, Jino Kim, Jeewoon Rim, Jimin Nam
  • Publication Date: 02-2021
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP)
  • Abstract: The conflict between the United States and China may be the issue of most importance as well as interest to the world, prior to COVID-19. This conflict between the two countries is appearing not only in the economic sector, but also in various field such as politics, diplomacy, and military affairs. Such competition between the two countries is likely to escalate further as multilateral systems such as the WTO are threatened and protectionism intensifies in the post-COVID-19 world. Even within Latin America, the competition between the two countries frequently appears in a variety of forms. Conflicts between the United States and China in Latin America tend to occur mainly in the infrastructure sectors. Furthermore, the United States pressured Latin American countries to choose between the United States and China, with the results of this pressure depending on the political orientation of the ruling government. In order to investigate the impact of retaliatory tariffs between the two countries on Latin American countries’ exports and welfare, we employ an event analysis for exports and computational general equilibrium (CGE) model for welfare, with Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and Chile as the subject of our analysis. Based on the outcome of the event study, Brazil’s exports to the United States moderately increased due to the tariff imposition, and such an effect persisted for short term. Its exports to China rose considerably immediately after the tariff imposition, and then the impact tended to decrease over time. By contrast, it is difficult to conclude that the tariff imposition had a statistically significant and lasting effect on the exports of the remaining three countries to the United States and China. As a result of the analysis using the CGE model, meanwhile, the tariffs imposed between the United States and China trivially increased the welfare of Latin American countries.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Economy, Tariffs, Exports, Trade, Rivalry
  • Political Geography: China, Asia, South America, Latin America, Korea, United States of America
  • Publication Date: 04-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: During the pandemic, Chinese medical and equipment supplies to Chile have come mostly from a diverse cast of Chinese players with local experience in Chile. They adapted to Chile’s unique system of emergency and disaster management. China has become a global power, but there is too little debate about how this has happened and what it means. Many argue that China exports its developmental model and imposes it on other countries. But Chinese players also extend their influence by working through local actors and institutions while adapting and assimilating local and traditional forms, norms, and practices. With a generous multiyear grant from the Ford Foundation, Carnegie has launched an innovative body of research on Chinese engagement strategies in seven regions of the world—Africa, Central Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa, the Pacific, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. Through a mix of research and strategic convening, this project explores these complex dynamics, including the ways Chinese firms are adapting to local labor laws in Latin America, Chinese banks and funds are exploring traditional Islamic financial and credit products in Southeast Asia and the Middle East, and Chinese actors are helping local workers upgrade their skills in Central Asia. These adaptive Chinese strategies that accommodate and work within local realities are mostly ignored by Western policymakers in particular. Ultimately, the project aims to significantly broaden understanding and debate about China’s role in the world and to generate innovative policy ideas. These could enable local players to better channel Chinese energies to support their societies and economies; provide lessons for Western engagement around the world, especially in developing countries; help China’s own policy community learn from the diversity of Chinese experience; and potentially reduce frictions.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Disaster Relief, Health, Pandemic, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: China, Asia, South America, Chile
  • Author: Julian Pedrazzi, Leonardo Penaloza
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Distributive, Labor and Social Studies (CEDLAS)
  • Abstract: In this paper we analyze the impact of Venezuelan migration on the female labor supply in Colombia. Using a instrumental variable approach we found significant drops in the female labor supply, mainly on those women with lower qualifications. In contrast, we observe significant increases for high-skilled women with family responsibilities, such as childcare. These results are consistent with a redistribution of time use, where women spend fewer hours on household tasks and more time in the labor market. Our results provide novel evidence of the consequences of forced migration between developing countries on the female labor supply.
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Migration, Labor Issues, Employment
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America, Venezuela
  • Author: Leonardo Gasparini, Irene Brambilla, Guillermo Falcone, Carlo Lombardo, Andres Cesar
  • Publication Date: 03-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Distributive, Labor and Social Studies (CEDLAS)
  • Abstract: We study changes in employment by occupations characterized by different degree of exposure to routinization in the six largest Latin American economies over the last two decades. We combine our own indicators of routine task content based on information from the Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIACC) with labor market microdata from harmonized national household surveys. We find that the increase in jobs was decreasing in the automatability of the tasks typically performed in each occupation, and increasing in the initial wage, a pattern more consistent with the traditional skill-biased technological change than with the polarization hypothesis.
  • Topic: Labor Issues, Employment, Automation, Job Creation
  • Political Geography: South America, Latin America, North America
  • Author: Felipe Ferreira de Oliveira Rocha, Marcelo de Almeida Medeiros
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: In this article, we analyse the content of the speeches delivered by Brazilian Presidents, Foreign Ministers and Ambassadors at annual Ordinary Sessions of the United Nations General Assembly in the period between 1946 and 2019. Our primary objective is to find out how often and under what circumstances Brazilian diplomats mentioned the subject of American regionalism and whether the mention was made in reference to specific projects or to abstract concepts of regional integration and cooperation. Based on this analysis, we highlight the great deal of importance that was given to MERCOSUR – and, to a lesser extent, UNASUR – to the detriment of other regional integration projects, as well as the preference, by Brazilian diplomats, for a flexible, low-profile, ab- stract and low-cost discursive approach. In short, we found that cooperation and integration have frequently been discussed, although little attention has been devoted to the limits and possibilities of each project under construction.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Regional Cooperation, United Nations, Regionalism
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Maria Victoria Alvarez
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: Both Brazil and Venezuela structured their foreign policy agendas in the early 21st cen- tury on the projection of their respective leadership in regional schemes such as UNASUR and ALBA, respectively, following an intermediate hegemonic strategy. The loss of dynamism of these post-hegemonic initiatives problematizes the relationship between regional governance and the role of regional powers. ALBA is a scheme contingent on the political cycle and political voluntarism intrinsic in Venezuela’s leadership. The bloc has lost members and relevance in recent years. As for UNASUR, most of its member states have withdrawn from the bloc and it is currently not operating. In short, post-hegemonic proposals lose dynamism and support once the leadership that promoted them weakens. A certain ‘hegemonic stability theory’ contextualized to South America with regard to the leadership of Brazil and Venezuela in recent years seems to be fulfilled: the decline in power of these countries helps to account for political reversals and changes in regional governance.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Regional Cooperation, Hegemony, Regionalism
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America, Venezuela
  • Author: Henry Iure de Paiva Silva, Augusto W.M. Teixeira Junior
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: How do Brazil’s defence documents incorporate natural resources and critical infrastruc- ture as political and strategic components of the national energy security framework? After present- ing the contemporary international landscape on the subject, which is marked by rising powers and geopolitics, the paper explains the theory and the conceptual foundations that support the claim of a securitization movement on natural resources and critical infrastructure that relates to energy se- curity in response to the absence of existential threats to Brazil. Following this effort, the text reflects upon and analyses how the matter has developed from 2005 to 2016 in Brazilian defence policies and in national defence strategies. By applying securitization theory to the case study, the final re- marks imply the need for a reflection on the importance of incorporating the geopolitics of natural resources and critical infrastructure related to energy security in defence thinking.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Energy Policy, Natural Resources, Infrastructure
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America
  • Author: Thauan Santos, Luan Santos
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: This paper discusses Brazil’s role in climate governance, methodologically and metaphor- ically comparing it to chess pieces moves, based on national and regional official documents, com- mitments and data. Unlike other IR studies, our proposal suggests different behaviours at different levels of analysis for the same country. Nationally, the country played the role of pawn. Regionally, there is no unitary behaviour: in international cooperation (carbon pricing case), it moves like a queen; in the regional integration process (energy integration case), like a king. The current scenario raises doubts about these roles, suggesting that Brazil has been presenting an increasingly moderate and conservative behaviour in the past years.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Energy Policy, Environment, International Cooperation, Carbon Emissions
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America
  • Author: Patricio Carpio Benalcazar, Francisco Javier Ullan de La Rosa, Francisco Javier Ullan de La Rosa
  • Publication Date: 02-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Revista Brasileira de Política Internacional (RBPI)
  • Institution: Instituto Brasileiro de Relações Internacionais (IBRI)
  • Abstract: Buen Vivir has recently emerged in Latin America as an alternative societal model to the historical liberal (or neoliberal) and Marxist ones. The article focuses on its Ecuadorian variant and, more specifically, the institutionalized version embodied in the 2008 Constitution and the policies of the Citizens’ Revolution governments. This version is the particular result of the convergence of three different currents and has become the hegemonic ideology in the country. The article describes its main thematic axes and appraises its originality, as well as the theoretical and practical contributions.
  • Topic: Political Theory, Governance, Hegemony, Ideology
  • Political Geography: South America, Ecuador
  • Author: Jose Antonio Sanahuja, Francisco Javier Verdes-Montenegro Escanez
  • Publication Date: 05-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Revista Brasileira de Política Internacional (RBPI)
  • Institution: Instituto Brasileiro de Relações Internacionais (IBRI)
  • Abstract: This paper examines the most significant processes of securitization and desecuritization occurring at the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) from its inception in 2008 until 2017, when UNASUR began to experience a gridlock. The analysis begins with the hypotheses of desecuritization of armed conflict among the South American countries, as well as their approach to problems drug-related. To this end, the paper is based on a critical theory of security with focus on securitization, and offers an expanded and/or discursive conception of security that goes beyond the military dimension.
  • Topic: Security, Regional Cooperation, Military Strategy, Regionalism
  • Political Geography: South America
  • Author: Jill Carlson
  • Publication Date: 06-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Possessions, or property, have been reiterated as a human right over the course of the centuries since Locke first wrote — enshrined in everything from the U.S. Declaration of Independence to the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights (1948: 217, A III). Nevertheless, executives, judiciaries, legislative bodies, and central banks around the world have continually broken their social contract on this front: not only failing to defend the natural rights of possessions and property, but often actively harming individuals’ ability to hold value and to freely transfer and exchange assets. Access to a free, open, and functional financial system is a fundamental human right. One that is continuously violated by states and policymakers globally.
  • Topic: Economics, Finance, Money, Economic Rights
  • Political Geography: South America, Venezuela
  • Author: Line Jespersgaard Jakobsen
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: This DIIS Working Paper elaborates how local consent to a huge industrial mining complex, including a port and a 150 km railway built in the 1980’s on indigenous arid lands, were created. Showing how both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ security technologies were effective in preparing the complex, constructing the necessary infrastructure and securing the operation, the paper at the same time illustrates how corporate security practices have changed over time in the northern part of Colombia. The paper is based on extended ethnographic fieldwork in La Guajira, Colombia, carried out through 2018 and 2019 as well as historical written documents.
  • Topic: Security, Environment, Oil, Poverty, Natural Resources, Non State Actors, Gas, Capitalism, Inequality, Economy, Conflict, Ethnography, Violence, Investment, Justice, Land Rights, Minerals
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America, Latin America
  • Author: Mauricio Fiore, Taniele Rui
  • Publication Date: 06-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Social Science Research Council
  • Abstract: Spread across Brazil and attaining an unparalleled political force, therapeutic communities are as inescapable in the debate on drug policy as they are complex to define. Although they are not a Brazilian creation, they have been operating in that country for decades, and their dissemination intensified in the 1990s. In 2011, they were officially incorporated into Brazil's Psychosocial Care Network (Rede de Atenção Psicossocial, or RAPS). Since then, therapeutic communities have been at the center of public debates about their regulation; about how they should—or even if they should—be a part of the healthcare system; about the level of supervision to which they should be submitted; about their sources of funding, particularly whether or not they should have access to public funding; and, most importantly, about the quality of the services they offer and the many reports of rights violation that have been made public. However, a well-informed public debate can only flourish if the available information is based on sound evidence. The SSRC’s Drugs, Security and Democracy Program is concerned with the policy relevance of the research projects it supports, and the debate around therapeutic communities in Brazil points to a clear need for impartial research that addresses different cross-cutting aspects of this topic in its various dimensions: legal, regulatory, health, and observance of human rights, among others. It is in this context that we publish this working paper series on therapeutic communities in Brazil. The eight articles that compose this series offer a multidisciplinary view of the topic, expanding and deepening the existing literature and offering powerful contributions to a substantive analysis of therapeutic communities as instruments of public policy. Although they can be read separately, it is as a whole that the strength of the eight articles that make up this series becomes more evident. Even though they offer different perspectives, they are complementary works in—and already essential for—delineating and understanding the phenomenon of therapeutic communities in Brazil.
  • Topic: Health, Health Care Policy, Domestic Policy, Community
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America
  • Author: Johanna Amaya-Panche
  • Publication Date: 05-2021
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: In 2016, the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) signed a peace agreement after three years of negotiations and at least four failed peace talks since 1982. The implementation of the peace agreement has been monitored and verified by international actors with technical, humanitarian and financial resources to promote peacebuilding and reconciliation. This Brief examines the challenges of implementing the peace agreement and explores how the European Union can support the implementation process and reconciliation efforts in Colombia. The Brief analyses first the state of play in the implementation of the peace agreement and its main challenges. Secondly, it presents an analysis of local-level violence. Thirdly, it highlights how peacebuilding and reconciliation efforts can mitigate local conflict dynamics. Finally, it concludes with policy implications and recommendations for supporting the implementation of the peace accord and shows how the EU can positively contribute to peacebuilding and reconciliation at the local level.
  • Topic: Treaties and Agreements, War, Conflict, Peace, Reconciliation
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America, Latin America
  • Author: Tamires Aparecida Ferreira Souza
  • Publication Date: 06-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal on International Security Studies (RESI)
  • Institution: International Security Studies Group (GESI) at the University of Granada
  • Abstract: With this article, we propose to reformulate the Regional Security Complex Theory, by Buzan and Waever, through a South American vision, with the time frame 2008-2016. To this end, we will analyse South America through Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia, and their forms of intra and extra-regional interaction, highlighting the Colombia-United States relations, and the South American Defence Council, of the Union of South American Nations. This article is divided into a first section marked by an understanding of the Regional Complex Theory, in which we present and discuss its theoretical elements and weaknesses, and propose theoretical changes that will guide our analysis. The second section contains information about the South American Complex in the academic view, focusing on the arguments of Buzan and Waever. In the third section, we present the South American Regional Security Complex restructured, as well as the analysis of its dynamics. The central argument of the article is the need to reformulate the Theory in question for a better understanding of the complexities and unique characteristics of South America.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, South America
  • Author: Lauri Tahtinen
  • Publication Date: 09-2021
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Increased deforestation in the Amazon is the outcome of Brazil’s long political crisis. What started in 2013 with a bus fare hike has traversed through contestable impeachment and populist uprising into a constitutional stalemate. European institutional investors have been in the vanguard of checking Brasília’s lax approach to deforestation and other environmental challenges. While investors continue to carry a big stick, European and US political leadership should consider what carrots they can offer Brasília. Brussels and Washington have changed course rapidly from an approach that emphasised closer ties with Brasília to one of dissatisfaction and distancing. This is both a cause and an effect of Brazil’s international standing diminishing both in terms of economy and country brand. In recent years, Brazil has simultaneously tried to raze more rainforest and build North Atlantic trading relations; the two cannot be done at the same time. A politics of rapprochement with Brazil requires much closer coordination between Europe and the United States than the parties are accustomed to; a commitment to a climate-sensitive globalisation is necessary from Brasília.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Environment, Globalization, International Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe, Brazil, South America, North America
  • Publication Date: 04-2021
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Natural Resource Governance Institute
  • Abstract: The exploitation of thermal coal in Colombia faces great challenges despite the abundance and quality of the country’s reserves. The main challenges are due to the external context: the downward trend in prices due to the structural drop in consumption due to the rapid substitution of coal for less polluting fuels or renewable sources in the European market, coupled with the great distance to Asian markets, have raised doubts about the economic viability of coal exports from Colombia. Colombia could be one of the first countries to suffer from the contraction in global demand for thermal coal, because its main markets are Turkey (23 percent) and the Atlantic ports in Europe (19 percent), two markets where demand will likely diminish in the short term. The contraction in demand would have various effects on the country’s economy, as it is the second-most important export (after oil), an important source of royalties and one of the main axes of the economies of La Guajira and Cesar departments. This study analyzes the implications of the decline in coal demand for the national economy and for the main producing regions, such as La Guajira and Cesar, which are highly dependent on coal exploitation.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Natural Resources, Coal
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America
  • Author: Max Paul Friedman
  • Publication Date: 02-2020
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Institute for Latin American and Iberian Studies at Columbia University
  • Abstract: Columbia University ILAS panel on Democratic presidential candidates and Latin America. Among leading Democratic candidates some basics are widely shared. They agree that military force should be a last resort and that long-term occupations are damaging. They promise to reinvest in diplomacy and rehabilitate the US image abroad, as well as trying to achieve US policy goals, by rebuilding alliances and recommitting to multilateralism on climate change, on nuclear arms control. They want to use foreign aid and international institutions to improve human security, address the root causes of migration, and seek diplomatic solutions to conflicts. There is a rough division between the mainstream, Obama-style approach represented by Joe Biden and the mayor from South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttegieg, who both believe that US alliances and international institutions are force multipliers for the United States. Together, the so-called moderate candidates have about 40% of the Democratic voter support in surveys. The progressive wing is represented by Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, who want to reduce US military activity abroad and also reform the global economic order in order to reduce inequality, conflict, and environmental damage. Together, Sanders and Warren have about 40% of the Democratic vote as well.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Politics, Elections, Democracy
  • Political Geography: South America, Latin America, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Will Sims
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Public and International Affairs (JPIA)
  • Institution: School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University
  • Abstract: This paper examines the accuracy of proxy means tests (PMTs) for identifying low-income households among migrant and refugee populations. Specifically, it develops a PMT model based on Colombia’s SISBEN system, and evaluates its ability to identify poverty among recent and established Venezuelan migrants and refugees. It finds that these groups have significantly higher rates of exclusion errors relative to native Colombians, which could prevent them from accessing valuable social services. These findings are robust to a number of specifications, and the issue is not resolved by simply including immigration status within the model. Additionally, occupational downgrading is identified as the most likely mechanism for this effect, as Venezuelan migrants and refugees in Colombia generally have lower returns to education when compared with native Colombians. These results should inspire caution when choosing to use PMTs for targeting, and it is recommended that all policymakers evaluate the accuracy of their PMTs for vulnerable subpopulations prior to implementation.
  • Topic: Migration, Immigration, Refugees, International Development, Economic Policy
  • Political Geography: Colombia, South America, Central America, Venezuela