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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?

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?

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.

Contested Powers: The Politics of Energy and Development in Latin America

8 Oct 2015 | Book Launch
The key to addressing climate change and sustainable development around the globe is to first address the relationship between political and financial power and energy use and resources. Meet the editors John-Andrew McNeish, Axel Borchgrevink and Owen Logan.

Education fees in Nepal give households a hard time

7 Oct 2015
During my fieldwork in Ilam district, Eastern Nepal, I had the chance to visit many different homes, and to experience parts of the everyday life of Nepali families. So far, in every single stay, I was impressed by the children’s motivation for doing homework until late in the evening, and their great ability to speak English. One of them, a 4,5-years old was copying mathematical rules and letters several times, “just for fun, as he is doing it every evening”, as his older brother told me.

Everyday Maneuvers: Military-Civilian Relations in Latin America and the Middle East

30 Sep 2015 | Conference
Military-civilian relationships go to the heart of a nation's culture and politics. Dr. Hazem Kandil from Cambridge University discusses Military, Security, and Politics in Regime Change. Prof. Catherine Lutz from Brown University will explore Military Power in Social Context. There will also be panel debates and young scholars' corner.

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.

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?

Media Development, Cross-cultural Communication and Public Diplomacy

12 Jun 2015 | Conference on China-Africa Communication

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.

Violence against women in Afghanistan: Getting away with murder

19 May 2015
On 19 March, Farkhunda was lynched by an angry mob on the streets of Kabul. She had been falsely accused of burning the Quran. In a swift trial, four men were sentenced to death, eight to 16 years in prison. The Farkhunda trial is a statistical outlier. In Afghanistan, few men are punished for violence against women.

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?

The balancing act of moderate Islamist politics in Tunisia

12 May 2015 | CMI Field Notes
Discussions over the role Islam should play in public life, are raging in Tunisia. A veiled Tunisair flight attendant caused uproar in the Tunisian Parliament recently, writes researcher Mari Norbakk from fieldwork in Tunis.

The Iran-US nuclear agreement: Beginning of a new era?

6 May 2015
If the nuclear framework agreement is to be the start of something bigger, the US and other Western countries need a vision beyond the fight against terrorism, argues Walter Posch at the National Defence Academy in Vienna. Recognizing the role of energy security and economy in the region may be key to long-lasting change.

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.

Hamas - between radicalism and pragmatism

2 Mar 2015 | PhD Defence
In January 2006, Hamas won the parliamentary elections in Gaza. The road to power has been paved with ideological and organizational changes. What was once a mere militia is now a crucial actor in Palestinian domestic politics, as well as in Palestinian-Israeli relations.

The harsh realities of life

10 Feb 2015 | CMI Field Notes
I am in Malawi on a short field trip to interview some of the main actors involved in pro-women policy processes in the country. On the road to Mulanje from Blantyre in southern Malawi the scenery is beautiful. It is hard to imagine that only a couple of weeks ago this district was one of the worst-affected by the flood disaster.

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.

The dubious effects of economic growth

22 Dec 2014
Ethiopian women are flocking to the labour market making money of their own. Does this mean that there will be more gender equality? With a grant from the Research Council of Norway's scheme for Young Talented Researchers, CMI’s Lovise Aalen will lead a new project studying the impact of economic growth on the lives of women in developmental states.

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?

China´s Soft Power in Africa: Emerging media and cultural relations between China and Africa

4 Sep 2014 | International Symposium
The conferance is organized by the School of Contemporary Chinese Studies at the University of Nottingham Ningbo Campus in China, the University of Westminster´s Africa Media Centre, and Rhodes University´s School of Journalism and Media Studies.

Girls need career possibilities

28 Aug 2014
Family planning policies have been implemented around the world for decades, but with limited results. This is also the case in Tanzania where school dropout is a big problem and the majority of girls get pregnant by the age of 20. What are they doing wrong?

Researching the social dynamics of law  

21 Aug 2014
Law is increasingly center stage for political battles. Across the globe, people are going to court to claim their right to health or education, to fight for their right to engage in sex work or same-sex relationships - while others mobilize courts and legislatures to criminalize prostitution or homosexual practice.

Thailand: A Different Kind of Coup

2 Jun 2014 | Behind the News
The military has seized power under the banner of 'unity and harmony' to defend the constitutional monarchy. In the short term, they have won. In the longer run, the outcome is much less certain.

Ethiopia, the Somali territories and regional conflict dynamics in the Horn of Africa

9 May 2014
Tobias Hagman gives a talk on the peace negotiations between the Somali rebel group Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) and the Ethiopian government.

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?

Simón Bolívar- a man of war and a symbol of freedom

27 Mar 2014
During the recent revolution in Egypt, Simon Bolívar- a man from a different war, a different century and a different continent- was watched over and embraced by protestors as a symbol for their struggle. Why?

The Voice of China in Africa: Conference in Maputo

19 Feb 2014 | Voice of China: Conference in Maputo
Voice of China: Conference in Maputo

Cancelled: Islamic Reform in South Asia

12 Feb 2014 | BreakfastForum
Caroline Osella (SOAS) and Knut Axel Jacobsen (UiB) in conversation with Åse Gilje Østensen (Royal Norwegian Naval Academy).

Defying the international expert community in Afghanistan

20 Dec 2013
There has been much debate on whether Afghanistan's informal justice practices should be integrated in the country's official justice system. Who should decide such an issue? Local activists claiming that these practices violate human rights, international researchers arguing that they are an undeniable part of Afghan 'reality' or military actors claiming that informal justice is necessary to win the war against the insurgents?

Strengthening tax systems in developing countries

19 Dec 2013
How can donors strengthen tax systems in developing countries? By complementing their technical approach with measures to build a taxpayer culture, and challenging development countries to take the lead, says CMI researcher Odd-Helge Fjeldstad.

Is Dos Santos pushing his luck?

19 Dec 2013
While the Angolan president José Eduardo Dos Santos may be grooming his son to follow him as president, political opponents of his regime have been eliminated. This year he has spent long periods of time abroad. Meanwhile, the social crisis in the country increases in scope. The opposition is organising their strengths. Even in the president's own ranks, there are murmurs of discontent. Has Dos Santos gone too far?

New projects to CMI

28 Nov 2013
CMI has won a framework agreement with the Norwegian embassy in Tanzania to conduct 7-10 in-depth studies on aid, public finance, natural resources, land and agriculture, macroeconomics the next 4 years.

The International Criminal Court: Global justice or unfair treatment of Africans?

27 Nov 2013 | BreakfastForum
Senior Researcher Gunnar M. Sørbø (CMI) and Professor of law Terje Einarsen (UiB) in conversation with Åse Gilje Østensen.

Can Ghana withstand the resource curse?

26 Nov 2013
Ghana discovered oil in 2010. The country now produces 100 000 barrels a day, amounting to an income of 1 billion dollars a year. Are the country's institutions strong enough to withstand the resource curse? -Yes, says Inge Amundsen, senior researcher at the Chr. Michelsen Institute.

Diversification or privatisation? Governance in the "Wild East" of Angola

30 Oct 2013
Rich in diamonds, yet abundant in poverty, Mathias de Alencastro looks at Angola's state-building efforts in the diamond-rich province of Luanda.

Changing conditions for fighting economic crime

30 Oct 2013 | Workshop
What constitutes an efficient criminal justice system? This international workshop with leading experts explores criteria for crime-preventive impacts through the criminal justice system.

Here come the girls: Empowering young Tanzanian women

28 Oct 2013
In Tanzania, there is a striking increase in the number of girls who get pregnant from the ages 16 to 20. Among 16 year olds, 11 percent get pregnant, whereas 61 percent of the 20 year old girls start childbearing. Why do so many girls have babies when they are this young? How does this affect their economic situation and possibilities of entering the job market?

Women, Power & Peacemaking in Africa

7 Oct 2013 | Seminar
Post-conflict countries in Africa have doubled the rates of female legislative representation compared with countries that have not undergone conflict. Professor Aili Mari Tripp compares changes in women's rights in Uganda, Liberia, Congo and Angola.