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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?

Towards a common standard for development agencies’ integrity systems

9 Nov 2015
An eventual OECD integrity guideline for development agencies should emphasise communication around ethics regimes and control systems, assessment and management of corruption risks, and moving towards joint responses in donors’ integrity systems.

Digital Revolutions: New Information Technology Tools in 21st Century Politics

2 Nov 2015 | Workshop
New digital tools represent a technological revolution, and are at the same time revolutionizing politics. They promise great potential for mobilizing people, ideas, and resources in new and profound ways. Join us in exploring the potentials and pitfalls of these new tools.

The European Commission pledges to do more with development partners to tackle corruption

2 Oct 2015
The U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre´s call for more EU action to curb corruption in non-EU partner countries hit a European nerve.

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.

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.

How to curb corruption in emergencies

4 Jun 2015
At lunchtime 25 April Nepal was struck by a devastating earthquake. Following high death tolls, numerous charitable organisations scurried to the South Asian country in order to provide humanitarian aid on the ground. The United Nations alone made a flash appeal for close to half a billion USD in emergency support.

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?

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.

How can Norway best support Afghanistan?

24 Mar 2015 | Afghanistan Week 2015:
The current situation in Afghanistan is the subject of two opposing narratives: one is a success story about international support and involvement since 2001; the other is a story where much has gone wrong and everything can only get worse. Agreeing on a narrative that is closer to the truth is crucial when deciding what form Norwegian support and involvement should take in the future, write Arne Strand and Liv Kjølseth.

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.

Criminalizing FGM in Sudan: A never ending story?

5 Mar 2015 | CMI field notes
After decades of efforts to end female genital mutilation (FGM) in Sudan, the prevalence of the practice is still staggering. So far, attempts to criminalize FGM have been futile, but there is an election coming up. Will a new national assembly open up for law reform?

The European Backlash: Conservative Movements, Abortion and LGBT Rights

29 Jan 2015
Europe experiences ultra-conservative push-backs on social advances in sexual and reproductive rights. Who are the actors, what motivates them and how do they work?

Creating successful businesswomen

4 Dec 2014
A field experiment from Tanzania shows that female entrepreneurs have less success than their male counterparts even after training and provision of grants. Why is it so hard to succeed for women running small businesses, and what will it take to shift the tide?

Angola and Norway - the perfect partnership? Business, politics and the challenge of human rights

23 Sep 2014 | The Angola Conference 2014
LIVE STREAMING NOW Angola is Norway's "biggest and most important economic partner in Africa" says the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Does Norway's activity in Angola contribute to Angola's stability and development over time?

Shaping the political arena

22 Sep 2014 | Literary salon
Michael Alvarez in conversation with David and Ruth Collier

Store penger, tett tåke: Norge, Statoil & Angola

22 Sep 2014 | Angola konferansen
LIVE STREAMING NOW Angola er Norges største økonomiske samarbeidspartner i Afrika. Bidrar norske investeringer til utvikling? Fellesrådet for Afrika og Chr. Michelsens Institutt (CMI) arrangerer en serie seminarer og debatter om Norges engasjement i Angola i tre norske byer i september.

Non-food challenges to nutrition

6 Jun 2014 | Open lecture
How politics interfere with nutritional programs

P4P: Good intentions can go wrong

30 May 2014
In an effort to improve maternal and child health, Tanzanian authorities implemented a pay for performance (P4P) scheme in 2009. The more women the health workers convinced to give birth at health facilities, the bigger bonus they would get. The number of women giving birth at health facilities did increase, but the new scheme also had adverse effects.

Protecting Civilians in Refugee Camps

22 May 2014
Rather than serving as civilian and humanitarian safe havens, refugee camps are notorious for their insecurity. When a violation occurs, to which actors shall responsibility be allocated?

Understanding Universal Crimes

22 Apr 2014
A dialogue between Terje Einarsen (University of Bergen) and Rob Currie (Dalhousie University)

Accountability for leadership participation in universal crimes and the role of judges

22 Apr 2014
How can we understand and ensure accountability for heinous crimes linked to power structures in society - including core international crimes such as genocide and crimes against humanity?

Impossible to measure the effect of Norwegian aid

4 Apr 2014 | New study
Norwegian aid projects have not been designed or implemented in a way that makes it possible to evaluate them, concludes a recent study of the Norwegian Aid Administration.

Security in public spaces

29 Jan 2014 | Breakfast Forum

Monopoly of victimhood

28 Nov 2013
In Uganda, data suggests that not only women and girls are sexually assaulted in times of conflict and war, but also men and boys. Yet, male rape victims are almost invisible in interventions and even debates on conflict related sexual violence. Attention is overwhelmingly focused on girls and women. -There is a monopoly of victimhood, says Chris Dolan, Director at the Refugee Law Project at the School of Law, Makerere University.

African perspectives on climate change governance

6 Nov 2013 | Let's be fair:
Africa is one of the most vulnerable continents to climate change. The poor are the most vulnerable to heat waves, sea level rise, the destruction of coastal zones, drought and water shortages. Is fair global interenational climate governance possible, asks Professor Oliver C. Ruppel.

The military chooses the people

27 Jun 2013 | Egypt crisis
The Egyptian military has a long history of safeguarding the Egyptian people from oppressive regimes. As the Morsi-government fails to curb the economic decline and growing unemployment, the Egyptian people once again turn their attention to the military in hope of rescue.

Arab Spring to Sudan?

25 Jun 2013 | From Khartoum:
There is an appetite for change. Discontent against Bashir is widespread. The popular sentiment rumbling in Khartoum is that Bashir will fall sooner or later.

Norwegian aid is wasted

21 Jun 2013
Or isn't it? Do aid efforts to reduce child mortality actually work? Do projects aimed at female empowerment lead to less violence against women?

Going beyond impact evaluation: Performance-Based Financing of Health Care Provision in Low-Income Countries

13 Jun 2013
The workshop made real progress in the dialogue between researchers, practitioners and policy makers. The priorities for research were made clearer. Read reports and summaries from the participants.

M. Cherif Bassiouni: International criminal justice in the era of growing globalization

30 May 2013 | Marking the 70th birthday of Astri Suhrke:
M. Cherif Bassiouni an international United Nations war crimes expert, often called "The Godfather of International Criminal Law". Professor Bassiouni has served in numerous United Nations positions, including Chair of the UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry for Libya (2011) and UN Commission on Human Rights for Afghanistan (2004-06).

Participation as an anti-corruption tool

30 May 2013
In the TALEARN Community of Practice, practitioners, activists, funders and researchers join forces to strengthen the impact and increase the scale of transparency and accountability interventions.- It is individuals on the frontline pushing for greater transparency and accountability on the part of governments who best understand the challenges inherent to this type of work, says Nils Taxell, senior adviser at CMI's U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre.

Dodging the health problems of the poor

30 May 2013
Less than 10 percent of money spent on health research is spent on diseases that primarily affect 90 percent of the world's population, including the poorest. Are even the meager 10 percent spent wisely? No, says Professor David Sanders and argues that a fear of stepping into the realm of politics makes global health actors and donors prioritise wrongly.

-Make vaccination the default option

28 May 2013
There is huge variation in vaccination coverage across low- and middle-income countries. Some of the poorest countries perform far better than richer ones. The standard policy response to low coverage is to improve supply of vaccines. Researchers urge policymakers to also work on the demand side. - Health authorities should try making vaccination the default option, says CMI-director Ottar Mæstad.

Afghan women's rights activists caught in a crossfire

30 Apr 2013
Afghan women's rights activists are caught in a squeeze between the expectations of Western donors, demands from Islamists and their own ambitions. Advocates fear rejection of all attempts to promote women's rights and are forced to make compromises.

Women's battles outside the Western feminist tradition

22 Mar 2013
The late Hugo Chavez proclaimed himself a feminist and opened up new arenas for women's activism in Venezuela. Poor women challenged their traditional roles as mothers and wives and took a collective step into the public sphere. Yet, their struggle is not so much about women's liberation from a Western feminist perspective as it is a fight for alleviating poverty and opening up new spaces for women's political participation.

When humanitarian action becomes politics

28 Feb 2013
The idea that you can incorporate humanitarian action into political agendas usually backfires, says Antonio Donini from the Feinstein International Center at Tufts University.

CSR in the Arab World: A mission impossible?

25 Feb 2013
CSR is on the rise in the Arab World, but the initiators find it difficult to root the concept beyond the ranks of state-owned enterprises and crony capitalists. - When CSR projects are initiated in Arab countries, they do not enter an empty void. Many businessmen have pre-existing conceptions of social responsibility, originated in Islam, says CMI-researcher Kjetil Selvik.

Navigating societies in transition

29 Jan 2013
How do military-civilian relations stamp societies in upheaval and conflict? What role do they play in the transition to democracy? A new CMI project on military-civilian relations compares Latin America and the Middle East.

Christmas in a Caracas barrio

20 Dec 2012 | Blogging from Caracas
The streets, shops, metros and buses are congested like a school of mackerel in syrup by people out spending their December wages. It is high-volume Christmas preparations.

FOOD AND FURY

16 Oct 2012
Food evokes emotions. Food shapes nations and cultures. Food can be a source of conflict. Food riots are one of the oldest forms of people's revolutions.

Assessing corruption risks critical for success of REDD

7 Sep 2012 | Op-ed
Learning the right lessons from past experiences with corruption in the forest sector is crucial to prevent broad undermining of REDD+.

Can corruption threaten REDD+?

29 Jun 2012
Norway has invested more money in the forest protection programme REDD+ than any other donor country. Corruption concerns have been widely raised when it comes to REDD+. Will Norwegian investments be in vain?