HSFK News https://www.hsfk.de en_DE Peace Research Insitute Frankfurt (PRIF/HSFK) Fri, 26 Apr 2019 15:45:00 +0200 Fri, 26 Apr 2019 15:45:00 +0200 news-6643 Wed, 24 Apr 2019 21:56:31 +0200 The Schlangenbad Talks, April 25-27 in Bad Nauheim https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yIh9T5uwRHc An interview with the organizers of the German-Russian bilateral conference - with English subtitles news-6641 Tue, 23 Apr 2019 14:19:39 +0200 Recalibrating European security https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/23/ways-out-of-the-crisis-recalibrating-european-security/ PRIF Blog: Hans-Joachim Spanger on the crisis of the European security architecture and ways to overcome it news-6638 Thu, 18 Apr 2019 09:32:22 +0200 Colombia: on the brink of escalation https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/17/on-the-brink-of-escalation-indigenous-groups-mobilize-against-the-government-in-colombia/ Indigenous groups mobilize against the government in Colombia - PRIF Blog by Solveig Richter and Johana Botia Diaz news-6634 Wed, 17 Apr 2019 11:47:16 +0200 Divestment and the global campaign against Israel https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/17/desinvestitionen-die-globale-bds-kampagne-gegen-israel-warum-kehren-fonds-firmen-israel-den-ruecken/ Why do companies turn their backs on Israel? A comment by David Barkhausen for PRIF Blog (in German) news-6632 Wed, 17 Apr 2019 10:02:23 +0200 Why Brexit ist not a singular phenomenon https://blog.oup.com/2019/04/eu-un-legitimacy/ Antonia Witt and Klaus Dingwerth on what we can learn from states' withdrawal from international organizations. news-6630 Tue, 16 Apr 2019 13:09:47 +0200 Chile: The militarization of the Mapuche conflict https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/16/how-the-chilean-government-deals-with-the-mapuche-conflict Jakob Meer on the major barriers to peace in the Araucanía region at PRIF Blog news-6628 Mon, 15 Apr 2019 16:26:15 +0200 Nigerian visitors at the library https://www.hsfk.de/en/service/news/news/nigerian-visitors-at-the-library-1/ Students from Nigeria review literature at PRIF's library Since last week a group of students from Nasarawa State University in Keffi, Nigeria is visiting the library at PRIF.

Together with their professor Olayemi Akinwumi, the eleven students are visiting PRIF to review the literature at the library. At the "Institute of Governance and Development Studies", they attend the study program "Security and Strategic Studies"  and search the library for literature that is relevant for their theses. "In Nigeria, gaining access to current literature is more difficult, so we are very pleased to have the opportunity to use the library.", says Prof. Akinwumi.

Unfortunately, there is hardly any opportunity to get to know Frankfurt besides working in the library: "I try to review and scan as much literature as possible so that I can continue working with it in Keffi", explains one student.


Prof. Akinwumi regularly travels to PRIF with students from his courses so that they can take advantage of the library's extensive holdings of literature on peace and conflict research.

news-6621 Tue, 09 Apr 2019 13:53:00 +0200 The rescue of migrants in the Mediterranean https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/09/turning-a-blind-eye-the-rescue-of-migrants-in-the-mediterranean/ Why European governments need to increase their Search and Rescue (SAR) efforts now - PRIF Spotlight by Carolin Liss The waters of the Mediterranean have in recent years become an unmarked grave for thousands of migrants every year who drown during their desparate attempt to reach Europe by boat, relying on the services of people smugglers and their often totally unsuitable vessels. Even though the obligation to rescue people in distress at sea is embedded in international maritime law treaties, such efforts by European governments have been limited from the start and recently decreased even further. Consequently a small number of NGOs have stepped up to fill in the gap and ease the humanitarian crisis off the southern European coast with volunteers and private rescue ships. Due to the rise of right-wing and populist powers, these NGOs are exposed to rising pressure, being accused of setting incentives to smugglers and migrants and getting denied access to European ports.

In the PRIF Spotlight "Turning a blind eye? The rescue of migrants in the Mediterranean" Carolin Liss outlines state and non-state Search and Rescue (SAR) operations in the Mediterranean, examines the decisive role played by Italy under its new government, which is increasingly taking on xenophobic tones, and presents short- and long-term policy proposals.

news-6623 Mon, 08 Apr 2019 15:12:51 +0200 Ethiopian politicians visit PRIF https://www.hsfk.de/en/service/news/news/ethiopian-politicians-visit-prif/ A high-ranking delegation of politicians from Ethiopia visited PRIF to discuss the country's current political situation (in German). Im April war eine Dele­gation aus der Demo­kra­tischen Bundes­republik Äthiopien zu Be­such an der HSFK. In der ersten April­woche besuchte die hoch­rangig besetzte äthio­pische Dele­gation, darunter die Vize­präsiden­tin des Parla­ments von Äthio­pien, Shitaye Minale, die Leiterin der Nationalen Wahl­behörde, Birtukan Midekssa und weitere Politiker von Oppositions­parteien verschiedenste Insti­tutionen und Ministerien in Berlin und Hessen. Die Delegations­reise stand unter dem Thema „Parteien als Instrument der politische Willens­bildung“.

Während des Besuchs an der HSFK disku­tierten die Delegations­mitglieder mit Wissen­schaftlern und Wissen­schaftler­innen über die aktuelle politische Lage in Äthiopien sowie Forschungs­projekten der HSFK zu Äthiopien und anderen afri­kanischen Ländern. Ein Beispiel dafür ist das Projekt „African Regional Organi­zations Seen from Below: AU (African Union) and ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) in Burkina Faso and The Gambia“ (Antonia Witt) und „Ethnic power relations and ethnic conflict in Africa“ (Felix Bethke). Die Delegations­mitglieder stellten zahlreiche Rückfragen zu den Forschungsprojekten und gaben wertvolle Tipps zu Quellenrecherchen.

Da der HSFK der Wissens­transfer in Politik und Gesell­schaft wichtig ist, diskutierten die Wissenschaftler und Wissenschaftler­innen mit den Delegations­mitgliedern darüber hinaus über Präsentations­möglichkeiten der Forschungs­ergebnisse. In der Diskussion wurde dabei der mögliche Einfluss der Forschungs­ergebnisse auf politische Entscheidungen und Institutionen vertieft thematisiert.

Organisiert wurde die Delegationsreise vom Auswärtigen Amt in Kooperation mit dem Land Hessen.

news-6619 Thu, 04 Apr 2019 15:49:35 +0200 MINUSMA between violence and peace efforts https://www.hsfk.de/en/service/news/news/minusma-between-violence-and-peace-efforts/ PRIF Spotlight by Alisa Rieth on the UN peacekeeping mission with German participation in Mali Up to 1100 German soldiers are currently stationed in Mali as part of the UN peacekeeping mission MINUSMA to support the peace process and stabilize the general security situation. At the end of May the mission mandate of the German Bundestag expires, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas is advocating an extension. Among the German public, Bundeswehr missions within the framework of a UN mandate are generally regarded as legitimate, safe and peace-promoting, but at the same time very little is known about the mission in Mali. In fact, since the late 1990s UN Peacekeeping Missions have evolved from the traditional monitoring of existing ceasefire agreements to robust combat operations aimed at separating armed groups, restoring the state monopoly on the use of force and protecting the civilian population - a reaction to the failed blue helmet missions in Somalia, Bosnia and Rwanda. In addition to problematic peace policy implications, this also entails an increased risk for soldiers who are exposed to targeted attacks. With more than 100 dead, MINUSMA is considered the most dangerous of all UN Peacekeeping Missions, without any noticeable progress in the Malian peace process.

In the PRIF spotlight "Robustes Peacekeeping in Mali. MINUSMA zwischen Gewalteskalation und Friedensanstrengungen" Alisa Rieth examines the policy implications arising from the more robust UN Peacekeeping mandates and explains why Germany should critically review the way it participates in the peace mission in Mali.

Download (389kB): Rieth, Alisa (2019): Robustes Peacekeeping in Mali. MINUSMA zwischen Gewalteskalation und Friedensanstrengungen, PRIF Spotlight 2/2019, Frankfurt/M.

news-6617 Thu, 04 Apr 2019 14:49:20 +0200 First analysis of the Turkish local elections https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/04/local-elections-in-turkey-can-they-steer-the-future-of-turkish-politics/ Can last week's election results steer the future of national politics? Sezer İdil Göğüş at PRIF Blog news-6615 Mon, 01 Apr 2019 09:30:00 +0200 Mozambique in state of emergency https://blog.prif.org/2019/04/01/mosambik-vor-den-wahlen-ein-land-im-notstand On the eve of elections: The fragile peace is not only threatened by the consequences of Cyclone Idai. Estefania Lopez at PRIF Blog (in German) news-6613 Fri, 29 Mar 2019 11:38:02 +0100 The Brexit fiasco: Lessons learned so far https://blog.prif.org/2019/03/29/the-brexit-fiasco-lessons-for-involving-parliament-in-foreign-policy/ PRIF Blog: Dirk Peters discusses lessons for how (not) to involve parliament in international negotiations. news-6611 Thu, 28 Mar 2019 11:44:22 +0100 "Black zero" vs. "Combating root causes of flight" https://blog.prif.org/2019/03/28/entwicklungszusammenarbeit-im-bundeshaushalt-schwarze-null-sticht-fluchtursachen-bekaempfen/ PRIF Blog: Ben Christian on the end of the financial heyday of German development cooperation (in German) news-6607 Wed, 27 Mar 2019 11:26:51 +0100 International Organizations under Pressure https://www.hsfk.de/en/service/news/news/international-organizations-under-pressure/ New publication examines the increased normative expectations towards international organizations International organizations have become an increasingly important and integral part of international politics. They regulate various areas of intergovernmental relations, provide communication forums and promote regional integration processes. Many of these institutions have come under political and public pressure in recent years - despite, or perhaps precisely because of, their ever-increasing relevance and competencies?

This is the topic of the new publication "International Organizations under Pressure", written by Antonia Witt together with her colleagues Klaus Dingwerth, Ina Lehmann, Ellen Reichel and Tobias Weise. On the basis of five case studies (WTO, OAU/AU, IUCN, IAEA, UNHCR), the authors analyze how the normative standards applied for the evaluation of international organizations have changed since the 1970s. It shows that the institutions today are exposed to a much broader and contradictory set of normative expectations from a variety of actors, including those outside their member states.

This is largely due to two long-term developments: First, the human-centered standards of legitimacy are rising, which means that organizations must demonstrate their relevance not only to member states, but also to their respective populations. Secondly, procedural standards of legitimacy are gaining in importance. Thus, international organisations are no longer judged only by what they do, but also by how they come to decisions, manage themselves or coordinate with other organisations. In the face of these more complex and potentially contradictory expectations, their vulnerability to crises increases. They are increasingly coming under pressure.

The publication "International Organizations under Pressure" was released by Oxford University Press on 21 March 2019.

news-6605 Tue, 26 Mar 2019 14:26:48 +0100 Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems (II) https://blog.prif.org/2019/03/26/murmeltiertag-in-genf-probleme-knackpunkte-moegliche-loesungen/ Niklas Schörnig on the problems, sticking points and possible solutions in context of the current debate (in German) news-6603 Mon, 25 Mar 2019 11:53:03 +0100 Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems PRIF Blog: Niklas Schörnig on the current debate on lethal autonomous weapons systems in Geneva (German only) news-6601 Thu, 21 Mar 2019 14:11:03 +0100 Saving Multilateralism in Times of Trump https://blog.prif.org/2019/03/21/saving-multilateralism-in-times-of-trump-what-can-europe-do/ Three lessons how Europe should pursue a non-hegemonic multilateralism. Caroline Fehl and Johannes Thimm at PRIF Blog news-6595 Mon, 18 Mar 2019 17:08:00 +0100 International Institutions in Crisis https://www.hsfk.de/en/service/news/news/international-institutions-in-crisis/ New research project: what are the consequences of he dissociation processes of international institutions? Brexit, US withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement under President Donald Trump and the demise of security cooperation between Russia and the West are reminders that international cooperation is fragile. This lies at the vore of the recent "crisis of the liberal order". States dissociate themselves from international institutions – either by formally withdrawing their membership, by ignoring their commitments or by creating alternative institutions.

Often when states drift away from international institutions, considerable tensions result between these states and those that want to maintain the institution. These tensions can cast a permanent shadow over their relations and lead to permanent patterns of competition and hostility. Thus dissociation from international institutions can have a significant impact on peace and security. But, so far, research has ignored these consequences and instead focused mainly on the causes of institutional crises and on the consequences of these crises for the institutions themselves rather than for interstate relations more broadly conceived.

Starting in April 2019, PRIF scientists explore this academic void in the project "Drifting Apart: International Institutions in Crisis and the Management of Dissociation Processes". It examines how five different dissociation processes unfolded and seeks to identify the factors that created, reinforced or mitigated tensions between the states in question. The interdisciplinary project was developed under PRIF's lead in the Leibniz Research Alliance "Crises in a Globalised World". It brings together four member institutions of the Leibniz Association. Besides PRIF, these are: GIGA - German Institute of Global and Area Studies (Hamburg), the Institute of Contemporrary History (IfZ, Munich) and the Center for Contemporary History (ZZF, Potsdam).

Together, they examine five historical and current cases:

  • the demise of security cooperation between Russia and the West since 2000
  • Brexit, the UK's withdrawal from EU membership
  • the creation of alternative institutions for international financial cooperation by the BRICS
  • the break-up of the Warsaw Treaty Organization
  • and the dissociation of Iran from cooperation with the West since the late 1970s
news-6597 Mon, 18 Mar 2019 15:21:45 +0100 Far-right terrorism. Academically neglected... https://blog.prif.org/2019/03/18/far-right-terrorism-academically-neglected-and-understudied/ ...and understudied: Francis O'Connor's PRIF blog post on structural deficits in international research on extremism.