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2016 Bergen Exchanges on Law & Social Transformation

22 Aug 2016
The Bergen Exchanges on Law & Social Transformation is an annual interdisciplinary meeting place for scholars who want to understand the interplay between law and social change. The lectures, roundtables and panels bring together scholars and practitioners from all over the world. Welcome

Hva nå Tyrkia?

13 Jul 2016

Ending child marriages: Not only a question of law

4 May 2016 | CMI Field Notes
The new Marriage Act in Malawi has been hailed for raising the legally prescribed age of marriage to 18, yet the truth is that there is no absolute minimum age of marriage in Malawi and that legal inconsistencies threaten the enforcement of the law.

Corruption risk management: a smarter option for development aid

2 May 2016
A risk management strategy that can identify, assess and propose specific mitigation measures for corruption problems can help better address corruption. When done right, corruption risk management can contribute to increase development impacts.

Reduce judicial corruption and improve access to justice for all

26 Apr 2016
Corrupt judicial systems undermine reforms and are a major impediment to ensuring access to justice and human rights for ordinary citizens across the world, says a new report published by the United Nations Development Programme and U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre on 8 April. Titled, A Transparent and Accountable Judiciary to Deliver Justice for All, the report cites survey data suggesting that the public perceive the judiciary as the second most corrupt public institution, after the police.

Shared Prosperity

15 Mar 2016 | The Chr. Michelsen lecture 2016: Kaushik Basu
Kaushik Basu is an Indian economist and academic who is Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist of the World Bank. In the Chr. Michelsen lecture he will discuss the normative properties of shared prosperity and the implications for actual policymaking, especially in the presence of globalization.

Announcement of the Chr. Michelsen Prize 2016

15 Mar 2016
The Chr. Michelsen Prize for outstanding development research 2016 is awarded to Francesca R. Jensenius, Senior Research Fellow at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI).

Oil regimes on the verge of collapse

11 Mar 2016 | Breakfast Forum
When oil prices fell in 2014, Angola and Venezuela lost half of their income base. Crisis followed. Why has it been so hard for these countries to reform their political economies?

Honduras slipping back into authoritarian rule

4 Mar 2016
Honduras has become one of the world’s most dangerous countries for activists. In the early hours of 3 March yet another prominent activist was murdered. Indigenous leader and human rights and environmental activist Bertha Cáceres was shot by unknown gunmen in her own house.

Legislative Candidacy in Electoral Authoritarian Regimes. Evidence from Tanzania

26 Feb 2016
Authoritarian regimes is the most common regime type aside from democracy. In these settings, the ruling party permits opposition but stifles their chances to win. Why do individuals run for legislative office on opposition versus ruling party tickets in such regimes? asks Keith Weghorst, Post-doctoral fellow at Vanderbuilt University in this seminar.

The Syrian War

15 Feb 2016
The Syrian chaos triggered in 2011 is presently the world’s #1 problem. Join UofB's one day conference on the Syrian War on 15 February.

In memory of Fredrik Barth

28 Jan 2016
Fredrik Barth, one of the world's most prominent anthropologists, passed away last Sunday at an age of 87. He taught us how to think about and analyze cultural complexity, ethnic relations, liveliood systems, ecology, politics and religion.

Mæstad continues as Director at CMI

23 Dec 2015
Ottar Mæstad has accepted an extension of his engagement and will soon enter his second term as Director at the Chr. Michelsen Institute.

Can REDD+ be corruption-free?

11 Dec 2015
Manipulating baseline forest data, double-counting project benefits, and skewing monitoring schemes have been known as likely corruption risks for REDD+. But how do these risks map onto the actual political economy of REDD+ implementation in selected pilot countries?

Why did the Tunisian dialogue quartet win the Nobel peace prize?

9 Dec 2015
As the Tunisian dialogue quartet was awarded the Nobel peace prize, the Norwegian Nobel Committee hailed the Tunisian quartet's essential role in advancing peaceful democratic developments. To make further advances, the Tunisian people must regain their sense of participation and significance in the process. If this happens, the Nobel peace prize can make an actual contribution to safeguard democracy in Tunisia.

Reality defeats good intentions: The power of religious leaders in Touba

27 Nov 2015
Legislation is a widely used tool for increasing the number of women in politics. But laws seeking to promote gender parity come short in facing the ‘sociological realities’ in Senegal, as the case of the holy city of Touba shows.

Protection of civilians: Why they die in US strikes

10 Nov 2015
The US military strike that devastated the MSF hospital in Kunduz in northern Afghanistan on 3 October generated profound, if short-lived, outrage in much of the world. The US government promised an investigation, and in late October appointed a military panel to do so. Yet its investigation is unlikely to address the more fundamental questions this attack raises: Why have US-airstrikes repeatedly produced catastrophic cases of “collateral damage” in Afghanistan?

A new push for peace in Colombia

4 Nov 2015
A conversation between Diego Martínez, General Secretary of the Permanent Committee for the Defense of Human Rights in Colombia, and Elin Skaar, Senior Researcher, CMI

How to make sense of a billion Tweets?

3 Nov 2015 | Open Seminar - Panel debate
Powerful communication tools in the pockets of billions and on our desktops have changed our ability to engage with the world through groups, apps, sites or maps. We organize ourselves, and participate in worldwide dialogue, through such tools. How are these tools used, particularly in developing countries, for humanitarian relief, governance and accountability, and civil society mobilization?

How stable is the Arab oil state?

3 Nov 2015
Michael Alvarez in conversatio with Kjetil Selvik and Bjørn Olav Utvik.

The way ahead for Tunisia

23 Oct 2015
Is Tunisia delivering on the promise of the Arab Spring by producing a real democracy?

What you need to know about extreme poverty

5 Oct 2015 | SDGs
End poverty in all its forms everywhere is goal number one in the new Sustainable Develelopment Goals. Magnus Hatlebakk explains what extreme poverty is.

Steps to limit the endemic corruption around junior mining companies

4 Oct 2015
High environmental risks and questionable development outcomes characterise the mining industry. A myriad of small companies operate in competitive, high-risk, high-reward settings with weak institutions that fail to enforce regulations. Such conditions are highly conducive to corruption, violence, and environmental destruction.

Five things you need to know about the SDGs

25 Sep 2015
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been criticised for being too broad and vague. What are the chances of success?

Blurred lines: When the military becomes intertwined with civil society

17 Sep 2015
When general al-Sisi appeared wearing a suit for the first time, it caused public outrage among the middle class in Egypt. It also sparked immediate speculations of a presidential run. The suit became another symbol of the blurred lines between military and civilian relations.

Stopping illegal trafficking of endangered species requires combatting corruption

3 Sep 2015
Corruption and illegal trafficking endanger the world’s biodiversity

No magic bullets for reconciliation

17 Aug 2015 | Rwanda
When societies go from military dictatorship to democracy or from internal armed conflict to peace, one of the toughest choices facing the government in the new order is how to deal with past violence. Great hopes have been pinned on transitional justice mechanisms, but the anticipated positive effects of transitional justice mechanisms on the process of restoring peace or (re)constructing democracy may be too high.

Seven months of war in the favela

13 Aug 2015 | CMI field notes
In the past, Brazilian intellectuals have coined the term “metaphor of war” to account for the representations of the crime and violence in Rio de Janeiro. The logic of war is at the very core of Rio’s pacification of the favelas, which in practice is carried out through armed confrontations between the police and armed groups within pacified favelas, where the main objective (on both sides), in spite of the rhetoric of peace, is still to kill the enemy.

Making remittances work against money laundering

20 Jul 2015
Hawala networks can be useful partners in the work against money laundering of corruption gains, rather than the obstacle they are often considered to be.

Kindergardens and shootouts

6 Jul 2015 | Blogpost from Rocinha, Rio de Janeiro:
So far, kindergartens and shootouts have by and large been completely unrelated issues in my world. Not anymore. Now, for the past days, every morning around 7.30, I have slowed down and scouted cautiously: Does anyone seem tense, watchful? Are there any police troops in a state of mobilization hiding somewhere close? Are there any heavy fireworks all of a sudden, alerts of that something is about to happen?

Print media in Kuwait: Pluralism with a bias

25 Jun 2015
The number of newspapers in Kuwait has skyrocketed, but their owners are all closely affiliated to the political elite. Does this lead to a certain bias in the newspaper’s electoral coverage?

Law and religious (un) freedom in the global era

18 Jun 2015
Is promoting "religious freedom" as a legally enforceable "right" the best guarantee for the free exercise of religion and for the accommodation of difference within deeply plural societies? This conference explores religion in and beyond law.

Media Development, Cross-cultural Communication and Public Diplomacy

12 Jun 2015 | Conference on China-Africa Communication

Jobs for the Poor: The Role of Private Sector Development

2 Jun 2015
Minister EEA and EU Affairs, Vidar Helgesen, presents Norwegian priorities. Mary Hallward-Driemeier (World Bank) shares findings on expanding job opportunities in developing countries. Followed by panel debate.

Magnificent and Beggar Land - Angola since the Civil War

22 May 2015 | Book launch
'We live in “an oligarch’s ideal world”. Western countries barely even pretend to disapprove of kleptocrats any more.’

Covering up a massacre in Angola?

19 May 2015 | Will the international community take a stand?
In mid-April 2015, news emerged about the killing of nine police-men in Angola's Huambo province. The incident involved the police and members of Juliano Kalupeteca's "Light of the World" religious sect. In the following days, grizzling reports emerged of a massacre of perhaps hundreds of sect members. We do not yet know the truth. Angola's government appears to do its utmost to prevent knowledge of it to transpire. Will the international community remain passive?

100 years since the deportation: “The Armenians are a nation of widows and orphans”

24 Apr 2015
Today, Armenia commemorates the starting date of the massacre on the Armenian people. On 24 April 1915, leaders of the Ottoman Empire arrested Armenian intellectuals and leaders in modern day Istanbul.

Policing the Favelas: Reform, Rank, and Resistance in Rio’s Pacifying Police Units

24 Mar 2015 | Rio, March 2015
Felipe doesn’t like it much, shootouts occur almost every day, but he knows that he can’t show any signs of weakness, so he tries to keep up appearances. Two weeks after arriving at Fazendinha he was shot in a confrontation with armed traffickers.

Political Terror: How do we measure and deal with human insecurity?

16 Mar 2015 | The Chr. Michelsen lecture 2015
International human rights law promises to protect “everyone.” Yet, there is no country in the world where citizens enjoy the human rights protection promised to them by law. Professor Mark Gibney will speak to the importance of measuring political violence and how it has been carried out.

Civil-military relations in Venezuela…by the pool

27 Jan 2015 | CMI Field Notes
In Venezuela, views on the relationship between civilian politics and the military are highly divergent. Yet, at the pool club Circulo Militar el Lagunito all boundaries between civilians and the military are blurred. In this social club, anyone is welcome, no questions asked. The idea of civil-military alliances is at the core of CMI researcher Iselin Åsedotter Strønen's field work in Caracas.

Multinational accounting firms: On both sides of the table

23 Jan 2015
Big accounting firms advice multinational companies on tax loopholes and lobby for tax exemptions. At the same time they advice governments in developing countries on tax reforms and engage in government task forces. A new research project delve deeper into the dual role of multinational accounting firms.