Category: Governance

What Can Somalia’s Federal Member States Learn from Somaliland as They Transition to Multiparty Elections?

Democratisation in the territories of the former ‘Somali Republic’ is influenced by the experience with the 1960s elections. After independence, the Somali republic adopted a parliamentary democracy. However, this democracy was short lived as elections became fraught with malpractices such as rigging, fraud, intimidation, and manipulation.

Civil Society Faces an Uphill Struggle to Defend Democracy

The Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded this year’s Nobel Peace Prize jointly to Belarusian human rights advocate Ales Bialiatski, the Ukrainian human rights organization Center for Civil Liberties, and the Russian human rights organization Memorial for their promotion of “the right to criticize power and protect the fundamental rights of citizens.” This year’s prize constitutes an important and timely recognition… Read more »

Power Cycle in International Politics: Africa’s Role in this Game

Amitav Acharya characterized the current world order as “a world of multiple modernities, where Western liberal modernity (and its preferred pathways to economic development and governance) is only a part of what is on offer”. A world, he adds, of interconnectedness and interdependence, and “not a singular global order, liberal or otherwise, but a complex… Read more »

Why has the Puntland state of Somalia been unable to conduct a ‘one person one vote’ election for over 24 years?

Somalia has not held multiparty elections since late 1969 when the military seized power from a democratically elected government in a bloodless coup.[1]  The military remained in control until 1991, followed by thirty years of civil war and political instability. After the collapse of the central government, major clans, notably those in the northwest and… Read more »

Are Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping Two of a Kind?

Democracy and separation of powers are in decline. In many countries, individuals have taken all the power into their own hands. This is true not least of Russia and China. Vladimir Putin has used his power to invade Ukraine. Recently, Xi Jinping practised encircling Taiwan. Could Xi be as willing to take risks as Putin?

Війна і прагнення мати сильного лідера

Досліджуємо, якого лідера воліють українці КЛЮЧОВІ МОМЕНТИ Під час воєн та інших криз люди зазвичай хочуть бачити на чолі суспільства сильного, домінуючого лідера. Опитування серед українців підтверджує, що люди надають перевагу сильному лідеру, особливо ті з них, хто відчуває гнів та агресивність. Нинішній президент Володимир Зеленський не вважається надто домінуючим, хоч є дуже популярним. Якщо… Read more »

The Myanmar Military’s Roadmap to Survival

As massive resistance against military rule in Myanmar continues, the besieged military administration lays out three priorities in its strategy to survive. As expected, Myanmar’s State Administration Council (SAC), also known as the military junta, last week extended the country’s state of emergency for another six months. Along with the extension, SAC Chairman Senior Gen…. Read more »

Should Norway Join the EU? Research on Democracy and Peace Suggests So.

The debate about Norwegian EU membership has gained new life in the wake of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. Norway has applied for EU-membership on multiple occasions. Charles de Gaulle blocked two applications in the 60s and the Norwegian population voted NO in referendums in 1972 and 1994 despite a clear YES-stance from the government and… Read more »

The UN Security Council Takes Action

The Security Council has played an important function during the war in Ukraine. There is a general perception that the war in Ukraine has caused an existential crisis for the UN and paralyzed the UN Security Council. This perception is incorrect. On the contrary, the Security Council has shown itself to be proactive, flexible and… Read more »

War and the Preference for a Strong Leader: Investigating What Kind of Leader Ukrainians Want

KEY POINTS During wars and other crises, people tend to want to be led by a strong, dominant leader. A survey among Ukrainians finds support for the strong leader preference, especially among those who feel more anger and aggression. Current president Volodymyr Zelenskyy is not seen as particularly dominant, though he is hugely popular. When… Read more »