This Week in South Sudan – Week 8

Tuesday 20 February The President of Egypt, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, said he wants to enhance security and stability in South Sudan, after meeting with a GoSS representative. Wednesday 21 February The Kenyan foreign ministry advise Kenyans against travelling to several areas in South Sudan. Friday 23 February A new UN report identified more than 40… Read more »

Aid Agencies Can’t Police Themselves. It’s Time for a Change

The spreading “Oxfam scandal” will affect the entire humanitarian sector painfully. It brings into plain sight what observers of the internal workings of NGOs have known for a long time: NGOs have an organisational reflex of banning outsiders from their kitchen, and keeping their potentially dangerous secrets hidden. Abuses of power are common in any… Read more »

Turkey’s Risky Adventure in Afrin

Turkey’s military incursion into Kurdish-controlled northern Syria risks straining diplomatic ties and exposing Turkey to increased terror threats. The Turkish offensive on Afrin that began on January 20 had long been anticipated. But while the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) may hope this campaign can drum up anti-Kurdish nationalism ahead of the 2019 elections,… Read more »

Valuing Critical Feminist Insights on Militarism and Security

By Annick Wibben Many Security Studies scholars still query the usefulness of feminist approaches to security. Or rather, they quite simply ignore the significant contributions made by Feminist Security Studies scholars [see e.g. Stern & Wibben 2015]. Sometimes this means that they miss, or are puzzled by, observations such as the finding that women might… Read more »

This Week in South Sudan – Week 6 & 7

Tuesday 6 February Hundreds of pro-government supporters protested against the newly announced US arms embargo outside the U.S. embassy and U.N. headquarters in Juba. Two journalists were beaten during the protest. Wednesday 7 February According to South Sudan’s Human Rights Commission’s latest report, national security officials continue to sexually assault and arbitrarily arrest civilians across… Read more »

New Mapping of Children Affected by Armed Conflict

This weekend, decision-makers from all over the world will come together to discuss current and future security challenges at the Munich Security Conference (MSC), which has become the major global forum for discussion of security policy. At the conference, Save the Children will launch its new report The War on Children: Time to End Grave… Read more »

Women’s Inclusion in the Peace Process in Mali

Women have been marginalized throughout the Malian peace process and their inclusion has received little priority, contrary to UN Security Council resolutions on the involvement of women in peace processes. Although legislation and policy frameworks promoting their inclusion are in place, implementation is lagging behind. Despite difficulties in the Malian peace process, there are opportunities… Read more »

Postcolonial states and ‘excessive militarism’: The Indian story

By Swati Parashar Do all states embrace militarism as a natural condition of their existence? Can militarism in different states be differentiated in content and form? How do states engender security through militarism? How is civilian consent built around militarism, especially in postcolonial states? In an era when populist regimes seem to dominate the political… Read more »

From Principle to Practice: Humanitarian Innovation and Experimentation

Without methods to gauge success and failure, and without appropriate ethical frameworks, humanitarian tech may do more harm than good. Humanitarian organizations have an almost impossible task: They must balance the imperative to save lives with the commitment to do no harm. They perform this balancing act amidst chaos, with incredibly high stakes and far… Read more »

Confessions of a Defector from Sociology (1)

I am very grateful to the Norwegian Sociological Association for awarding me its Lifetime Achievement Award for 2018 (Norwegian original here, English translation here). Why did I become a sociologist? Why did I leave? And: Do I regret it?             In fact, I find this exceptionally generous. Although I was once… Read more »