20,493 research outputs found

    Enhancing US Global Competitiveness through Women, Peace, and Security

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    Global powers, regional hegemons, and non-state actors engaged in a perennial state of competition dominate today’s security environment. In response, the Department of Defense has adopted the competition continuum model of cooperation, competition below armed conflict, and armed conflict. The military could significantly improve its efforts to compete along this continuum and achieve national security objectives by leveraging the Women, Peace, and Security global policy framework that supports gender equality and values women’s diverse roles in global security

    Wooster Magazine: Spring 2023

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    The spring 2023 issue of Wooster magazine features alumni influencing change in their communities around the world, including John Carwile ’81, career member of the U.S. Foreign Service; Rashmi Ekka ’08, international development consultant; Samira El-Adawy ’13, Special Olympics youth manager in the Middle East and North Africa; Ishtiaq Ghafoor ’00, a diplomat with the British Foreign Service; Sarah Haile ’03, a biostatistician at University of Zurich; Kurt Russell ’94, 2022 National Teacher of the Year; and Lauren Vargo ’13, climate change researcher in New Zealand. Also featured are students who have attended the annual Athens Democracy Forum for the past five years and recent international graduates taking advantage of opportunities to gain experience in STEM fields. The issue also includes an interview with Wooster’s incoming 13th president, Dr. Anne McCall.https://openworks.wooster.edu/wooalumnimag_2011-present/1045/thumbnail.jp

    China’s approach to international law and the Belt and Road Initiative - perspectives from international investment law

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    This dissertation examines China’s approach to international law. In order to do so, it compares the country’s stance on international dispute resolution in past and present times. After a first historical chapter outlining China’s changeable relationship with international adjudication, the thesis subsequently focuses on contemporary developments. The emphasis here is on international instruments and mechanisms that China uses to protect investments within the Belt and Road Initiative. This dissertation combines doctrinal analysis with concrete case studies and applies deductive as well as inductive methods. The study of the legal dimension of the initiative leads to the basic assumption that two coexisting regulatory complexes provide investment protection within the initiative. Accordingly, as a first complex, the dissertation analyses China’s design of investment protection treaties and China’s stance in the reform debate on the future of in-vestment arbitration. As an outcome, the analysis claims that even though the first complex does not relate specifically to the Belt and Road Initiative, this complex nevertheless has inextricable links to China’s approach in the initiative’s context. Soft law documents, which China has concluded with both state and non-state actors, and informal mechanisms of dispute resolution form the second regulatory complex. The study investigates their functions for investment protection in the Belt and Road Initiative. In an overall view of the two regulatory complexes, this dissertation finds that China uses strictly legal and rather political methods for investment protection. In the synopsis of this result with the findings obtained from the historical part, the study concludes that China follows a realist approach to international law

    Preferentialism and the conditionality of trade agreements. An application of the gravity model

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    Modern economic growth is driven by international trade, and the preferential trade agreement constitutes the primary fit-for-purpose mechanism of choice for establishing, facilitating, and governing its flows. However, too little attention has been afforded to the differences in content and conditionality associated with different trade agreements. This has led to an under-considered mischaracterisation of the design-flow relationship. Similarly, while the relationship between trade facilitation and trade is clear, the way trade facilitation affects other areas of economic activity, with respect to preferential trade agreements, has received considerably less attention. Particularly, in light of an increasingly globalised and interdependent trading system, the interplay between trade facilitation and foreign direct investment is of particular importance. Accordingly, this thesis explores the bilateral trade and investment effects of specific conditionality sets, as established within Preferential Trade Agreements (PTAs). Chapter one utilises recent content condition-indexes for depth, flexibility, and constraints on flexibility, established by Dür et al. (2014) and Baccini et al. (2015), within a gravity framework to estimate the average treatment effect of trade agreement characteristics across bilateral trade relationships in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) from 1948-2015. This chapter finds that the composition of a given ASEAN trade agreement’s characteristic set has significantly determined the concomitant bilateral trade flows. Conditions determining the classification of a trade agreements depth are positively associated with an increase to bilateral trade; hereby representing the furthered removal of trade barriers and frictions as facilitated by deeper trade agreements. Flexibility conditions, and constraint on flexibility conditions, are also identified as significant determiners for a given trade agreement’s treatment effect of subsequent bilateral trade flows. Given the political nature of their inclusion (i.e., the appropriate address to short term domestic discontent) this influence is negative as regards trade flows. These results highlight the longer implementation and time frame requirements for trade impediments to be removed in a market with higher domestic uncertainty. Chapter two explores the incorporation of non-trade issue (NTI) conditions in PTAs. Such conditions are increasing both at the intensive and extensive margins. There is a concern from developing nations that this growth of NTI inclusions serves as a way for high-income (HI) nations to dictate the trade agenda, such that developing nations are subject to ‘principled protectionism’. There is evidence that NTI provisions are partly driven by protectionist motives but the effect on trade flows remains largely undiscussed. Utilising the Gravity Model for trade, I test Lechner’s (2016) comprehensive NTI dataset for 202 bilateral country pairs across a 32-year timeframe and find that, on average, NTIs are associated with an increase to bilateral trade. Primarily this boost can be associated with the market access that a PTA utilising NTIs facilitates. In addition, these results are aligned theoretically with the discussions on market harmonisation, shared values, and the erosion of artificial production advantages. Instead of inhibiting trade through burdensome cost, NTIs are acting to support a more stable production and trading environment, motivated by enhanced market access. Employing a novel classification to capture the power supremacy associated with shaping NTIs, this chapter highlights that the positive impact of NTIs is largely driven by the relationship between HI nations and middle-to-low-income (MTLI) counterparts. Chapter Three employs the gravity model, theoretically augmented for foreign direct investment (FDI), to estimate the effects of trade facilitation conditions utilising indexes established by Neufeld (2014) and the bilateral FDI data curated by UNCTAD (2014). The resultant dataset covers 104 countries, covering a period of 12 years (2001–2012), containing 23,640 observations. The results highlight the bilateral-FDI enhancing effects of trade facilitation conditions in the ASEAN context, aligning itself with the theoretical branch of FDI-PTA literature that has outlined how the ratification of a trade agreement results in increased and positive economic prospect between partners (Medvedev, 2012) resulting from the interrelation between trade and investment as set within an improving regulatory environment. The results align with the expectation that an enhanced trade facilitation landscape (one in which such formalities, procedures, information, and expectations around trade facilitation are conditioned for) is expected to incentivise and attract FDI

    Critical terrorism studies and the far-right: Beyond problems and solutions?

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    Recent years have witnessed increasing academic, media, and political attention to the threat of far-right terrorism. In this article, I argue that scholarship on this threat has suffered from two limitations, each with antecedents in terrorism research more broadly. First, is an essentialist approach to this phenomenon as an extra-discursive object of knowledge to be defined, explained, catalogued, risk assessed, and (ultimately) resolved. Second, is a temptation to emphasise, even accentuate, the scale of this threat. These limitations are evident, I argue, within scholarship motivated by a problem-solving aspiration for policy relevance. They are evident too, though, within critical interventions in which a focus on far-right terrorism is seen as an important corrective to established biases and blind spots within (counter-)terrorism research and practice. In response, I argue for an approach rooted in the problematisation and desecuritisation of the far-right threat. This, I suggest, facilitates important new reflection on the far-right’s production within and beyond terrorism research, as well as on the purposes and politics of critique therein

    From Stalemate towards Settlement: Afghan Peace Process

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    United States and Taliban’s complicated relations date back to 9/11, when Taliban had provided refuge to alleged attackers of the terrific attacks. After that, series of atrocities committed by both sides and then finally in 2013, an effort was made to have informal presence of Taliban in Qatar, but the idea rejected by Karzai government. After that, two meetings were held in Urumqi and Murree, these meeting were between the representatives of Afghan government and Taliban, United States attended the meeting as an observer. The peace process halted after the news of death of Mullah Omar just the day before second round of Murree progress, because his death triggered uncertainty in the peace process. The peace process was renewed in 2018 when United States shared table with Taliban, the peace process was moving relatively smooth until the recent meeting which was scheduled in Qatar on 9th and 10th January 2019. It was canceled by Taliban leaders over the disagreement on the agenda of that meeting. Taliban have some demands, including the withdrawal of foreign troops, release of Taliban prisoners, change of constitution, to remove the name of Taliban leaders from UNSC list and the permission to have political presence in Qatar. United States now wants to get rid of Afghanistan and to make the peace process Afghan-led and Afghan-owned, to which Taliban are reluctant. The continued efforts of US and the current uncertain situation are apparently leading to no possible consensus among the adversaries in near future. It seems that this continued uncertainty will ultimately lead to chaos in Afghanistan, because of diversity and war-prone nature of the country

    Beyond autonomy: rethinking Europe as a strategic actor

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    Strategic autonomy has become the buzzword of the European policy scene in recent years, with a slew of reports and policy proposals dedicated to the subject, and high-level support among European leaders. But big questions remain about what the concept actually means and what its implications are for Europe and the EU. Drawing on contributions to a recent high-level workshop as well as the five briefings contained in this volume, this report seeks to make the case for moving ‘beyond autonomy’ in five key respects - conceptually, thematically, geographically, temporally, and politically. Only by doing this are we able to move the debate on autonomy forward and highlight a number of key debates and issues on which greater attention from policymakers is needed. This report from LSE IDEAS and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation highlights new directions for policy debate and academic research on the concept of strategic autonomy, all of which take us into new domains

    Towards a more just refuge regime: quotas, markets and a fair share

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    The international refugee regime is beset by two problems: Responsibility for refuge falls disproportionately on a few states and many owed refuge do not get it. In this work, I explore remedies to these problems. One is a quota distribution wherein states are distributed responsibilities via allotment. Another is a marketized quota system wherein states are free to buy and sell their allotments with others. I explore these in three parts. In Part 1, I develop the prime principles upon which a just regime is built and with which alternatives can be adjudicated. The first and most important principle – ‘Justice for Refugees’ – stipulates that a just regime provides refuge for all who have a basic interest in it. The second principle – ‘Justice for States’ – stipulates that a just distribution of refuge responsibilities among states is one that is capacity considerate. In Part 2, I take up several vexing questions regarding the distribution of refuge responsibilities among states in a collective effort. First, what is a state’s ‘fair share’? The answer requires the determination of some logic – some metric – with which a distribution is determined. I argue that one popular method in the political theory literature – a GDP-based distribution – is normatively unsatisfactory. In its place, I posit several alternative metrics that are more attuned with the principles of justice but absent in the political theory literature: GDP adjusted for Purchasing Power Parity and the Human Development Index. I offer an exploration of both these. Second, are states required to ‘take up the slack’ left by defaulting peers? Here, I argue that duties of help remain intact in cases of partial compliance among states in the refuge regime, but that political concerns may require that such duties be applied with caution. I submit that a market instrument offers one practical solution to this problem, as well as other advantages. In Part 3, I take aim at marketization and grapple with its many pitfalls: That marketization is commodifying, that it is corrupting, and that it offers little advantage in providing quality protection for refugees. In addition to these, I apply a framework of moral markets developed by Debra Satz. I argue that a refuge market may satisfy Justice Among States, but that it is violative of the refugees’ welfare interest in remaining free of degrading and discriminatory treatment
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