FAU-Nyt / 2014-3

Velkomst v. Mikkel Funder, Bestyrelsesmedlem i FAU 

Kære FAU medlem,

I disse år har vi i udviklingsdebatten travlt med at tale om forandring.  Om nye globale mfu big11magtforhold, om vækst i syd, om bistandens ændrede rolle, og om nye aktører i udviklingsprocessen. Og det kan jo vitterligt være vældigt inspirerende at være forsker i en brydningstid. Det åbner nye vinkler og tematikker i det faglige stof, og tvinger os til at revurdere gamle antagelser.

Når dét er sagt, har jeg for nylig flere gange spurgt mig selv, om jeg ubevidst var ved at blive lidt for opslugt af denne meget stærke fortælling om ”en verden i forandring”.

Sidste år bemærkede jeg overfor en kollega på University of Nairobi, at byen da godt nok ændrede sig i disse år. Det var han ikke enig i. Byen vokser, sagde han, men på samme måde som den altid har gjort. For ham var det væsentlige ikke hvordan forandringen så ud, men hvordan den blev til. Han var stærkt kritisk overfor landets officielle vækst-filosofi, og mente ikke der var forskel på de grundlæggende dynamikker og skævheder i udviklingsprocessen før og nu.

Det kan man så være enig eller uenig i, men den underliggende pointe er vel væsentlig nok: Det er let at blive fascineret af forandringens udtryk, men det må ikke afholde os fra at undersøge om dens grundlæggende væsen i sig selv er forandret – og i såfald hvordan og hvorfor.

Samtidig er det som bekendt let at stirre sig blind på alt dét, der vitterlig forandres og overse dét, der ikke gør. Eksempelvis har nogle kommentatorer påpeget, at den såkaldte ”Africa Rising” diskurs har tendens til at bortlede vores fokus fra centrale problemstillinger - såsom den forsatte enorme fattigdom i de afrikanske lande. Et eksempel på kritikken kan læses hér: http://africasacountry.com/against-the-gospel-of-africa-rising/.

”The more things change, the more they stay they same” siger man. Det er ikke nødvendigvis rigtigt, men det er altid en mulighed der bør undersøges.

  

Mikkel Funder

Bestyrelsesmedlem I FAU & Seniorforsker ved DIIS 

 


Nyheder fra FAU

  • FAU-DDRN Konference / Offentliggørelse af første keynote speaker

FAU og DDRN afholder fælles konference den 20. til 22. august 2014. Arrangementet afholdes under overskriften "Development Paradoxes - the difficulties of marrying growth with local economic development and poverty reduction". Planlægningen er i fuld gang og vi kan nu annoncere de to første første keynote speakers. Mike Morris, økonomiprofessor og leder af PRISM-netværket (Policy Research on International Services and Manufacturing) ved University of Cape Town og Stephanie Barrientos som er professor ved University of Manchester (Institute of Development Policy and Management) med særlig tilknytning til universitets Brooks World Poverty Institute. Læs nærmere om konferencen her.

  • FAU-DDRN konference / Master Thesis Competition

I forbindelse med sommerens konference udbydes en konkurrence for den bedste kandidatafhandling. Vinderen modtager en pris på 1000€ og der er også priser til 2. og 3. pladsen. Læs om de nærmere betingelser her.

  • Medlemsskab

FAU's sekretariet har netop åbnet op for kontingentindbetaling for 2014. Ved tilmelding kan du med fordel benytte vores nye online medlemsformular.

 


Seminarer og konferencer

  • Derudover afholdes der to konferencer i efteråret med udvikling i Asien som omdrejningspunkt. Det drejer sig om ADI's (The Asian Dynamic Initiative) konference med titlen 'Intra-­Asian Connections: Interactions, flows, landscapes' som afvikles på KU den 22. til 24. oktober samt ASEASUK's (As

    sociation of South-East Asian Studies in the UK) årlige konference, som finder sted i Bristol (12.-14. september)

 


Publikationer

States at work: Dynamics of African bureaucracies

African bureaucracies have attracted all kinds of – mostly negative – labels since the early 1990s: corrupt, ineffective, and expensive. The basis for such assessments has been thin. There has been little scholarly attention to the actual working of African state agencies.

The new book “States at Work” explores the mundane practices of state-making in Africa by focusing on the daily functioning of public services and the practices of civil servants. It tells a much more nuanced story about the dynamics of African bureaucracies.  Adopting mainly an ethnographic approach as a basis for theorizing, the authors – which includes DIIS researcher Ole Therkildsen - deal with topics including: bureaucratic cultures and practical norms, operational routines in offices, career patterns and modes of appointment; how bureaucrats themselves perceive and deliver goods and services and interact with service users; the accumulation of public administration reforms and how the different bureaucratic corps react to the ‘good governance’ discourse and new public management policies; the consequences of these reforms for the daily working of state bureaucracies and for the civil servants’ identities and modes of accountability; and the space that exists for bottom-up micro-reforms that build on local innovations or informal arrangements.

Out of the Woods: Gridlock in the IMF and World Bank puts multilateralism at risk

Professor Robert Wade and Jakob Vestergaard's  DIIS report on the gridlock in governance reforms in the IMF and the World Bank argues:  "The western hegemony of the past two hundred years is ending as power shifts towards the east and as western states lose the authority to uphold a rules-based multilateral order. In the wake of the Great Crash of 2008 the G20 leaders took steps to bolster the multilateral order, including reform of the governance of the IMF and the World Bank. We show that the these reforms have substantially failed to meet their ostensible objectives. First, in both organizations the developed countries gained voting share relative to GDP share between 2009 and 2014. Secondly, countries continue to vary widely in their share of votes relative to share of world GDP; in both organizations some countries have six times or more the votes relative to GDP of others. Politicians and analysts should pay greater attention to achieving more equitable governance in these important multilateral organizations. At the end we show how this could be done."

Ruling Elite Capture of New Economic Opportunities: The Development of Natural Resource Linkages in Mozambique

In this paper Lars Buur explores linkage creation in Mozambique related to mega-projects in natural resource extraction and development from a political economy perspective. This new DIIS Working Paper explores the ‘best practice’ attempts between commodity producers and local content providers. The paper argues that a relatively elaborate state organizational and institutional setup based on policies, strategies and units with funding tools has emerged over time in Mozambique in order to begin to reap the benefits of large-scale investments in the extractive sectors. However, despite the formal acknowledgement, very little has been achieved with regard to forward and backward linkages, state institutions are often despite the official government rhetoric of importance simply bypassed not only by foreign investors, but also by the political leadership.

Gender and land administration: the Case of Zambia

Gender and Land policies provide for the allocation of land to women - but have little impact on the ground.  This DIIS Working Paper is part of a series on gender equality and land administration within the ReCom framework. It discusses Zambia’s dual land tenure system, the ways in which gender issues have been incorporated in legal and policy documents, and the extent to which this has been reflected in practice. It also examines the role of donors in legal and policy processes and donor support to civil society in relation to women’s land rights.