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Free access

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

Security is one of the most salient issues in Latin America today. Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos won re-election in June 2014 in a vote that was essentially a referendum on the peace negotiations that he has established with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC acronym in Spanish) in hopes of ending Colombia’s decades-old civil war. Simultaneously, Mexico has witnessed further upheaval as citizens in some areas have taken up arms, and received support from the federal government, in opposition to drug cartels. These are only two examples of high profile developments in Latin America related to security issues.

Restricted access

Gilberto Conde

Abstract

This article looks back at the 2011 Arab Spring where the movements that brought hope to the region and beyond seem to have gone astray. The military has taken over in Egypt, while Libya, Syria and Yemen have descended into civil strife with tremendous human costs. Bahrain has witnessed repression that has overwhelmed the opposition, and while Tunisia, the country where Arab Spring began, has avoided the violence characterizing the aforementioned states, change has remained rather limited. As for other countries that rode on the same wave of mobilizations, hopes for democratic transformation have been subdued in some-what less violent contexts but with varying degrees of pressure from the state. This article examines what has happened to the Arab Spring countries, why and what is required to democratically transform the region.

Free access

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

Since the end of the Cold War in 1990, “regions” and “governance” have become prominent themes in the social sciences and they have often accompanied each other in both political and academic circles. During this historical period, regions have developed in many ways, including the proliferation and deepening of regional integration schemes, including among others, the enlargement of the European Union (EU), the establishment of the North American Free Trade Agreement, the passage of the Organization of African Unity to the African Union, and the transformation of the Andean Pact into the Andean Community. While world regions were being established at the supranational level, sub-national regions also began to take form. The 1990s witnessed the development of regional economies, regional identities, regionalist ideologies, political parties, and social movements. In many cases, these transformations could not be contained by national boundaries. The notion of “borders” has recently been replaced by “border regions” as these areas have become accepted as socially constructed territories that transcend political and geographic delineations.

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Contemporary citizenship debates

The search for firm footing on shifting terrains

European Union) represented an important realignment of the French political system. The fallout of these events, however, has been equally interesting. The US has witnessed citizen mobilization/social protests around policy positions—such as migration

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Regional integration from “below” in West Africa

A study of transboundary town-twinning of Idiroko (Nigeria) and Igolo (Benin)

Olukayode A. Faleye

frontiers of inter-regional relations. However, state making in the region led to the institutionalization of borders which initially acted as barrier to intergroup and intragroup relations in the area. The post-colonial period witnessed the transformation

Open access

Community engagement, shared knowledge, and resilience

Implications for the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

of environmental risk, we have witnessed wildfires in the United States, flooding in Indonesia, and the massive eruption of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai volcano in Tonga. Of course, climate change remains an existential threat in the background of

Free access

Barriers and borders

Human mobility and building inclusive societies

Anthony Turton

father what they were saying. He told me they were singing songs of liberation from oppression, and he hastily bundled me into a motorcar and drove me off to safety. What I was witnessing was the rippling unrest that arose from the Sharpeville Massacre

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Is there a link?

Japan’s internal cohesion and external conflict with neighbors

Robert W. Compton Jr.

unlikely that the Japanese, in particular, would suddenly witness a baby boom. Increasing women’s economic empowerment also mitigates against such a development. Put in other words, as Hirata and Warschauer note, there is a cohesion breakdown and increased

Free access

Coronavirus with “Nobody in Charge”

An open reflection on leadership, solidarity, and contemporary regional integration

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

provide socioeconomic protection to vulnerable citizens. In fact, the opposite has occurred in most parts of the world, and we are now witnessing a strong backlash against regionalism. The Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) has been replaced by free

Open access

Scratches on our sovereignty?

Analyzing conservation politics in the Sundarbans

Jayashree Vivekanandan

such negotiations, as scratches inflicted on their sovereignty. The article examines how the Sundarbans mangrove forests in South Asia, despite being steadily integrated into the global conservation discourse, continue to witness state assertions of