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Michael Keating

It is notoriously difficult to define the region. It is a territorial space, certainly, so we can exclude virtual spaces from our consideration, but it can take a number of territorial configurations. There is a conventional but still useful distinction between substate regionalism, studied traditionally by geographers, planners, sociologists, political scientists and historians, and supra-state regions, studied by other geographers and in international relations and strategic studies. Economists may make use of both. A third conception is the transnational region, which cuts across the boundaries of states, taking in some but not all of the territory or more than one political community. All these meanings, however, are relative to the nation-state, being above, below, or across it but not questioning its standing as the authoritative definer of territorial boundaries. Most of them also unproblematically use the term “nation-state” to define both a sovereign polity and one in which state and nation coincide, although in plurinational polities these are quite different meanings.

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Designing and implementing their own future

Grassroots efforts among the Maya of Guatemala

Allison D. Krogstad

In the Kaqchikel Maya town of San Jorge La Laguna, Guatemala, a fight to reclaim lost land in 1992, though unsuccessful, eventually led the community to become one of the first Maya towns on Lake Atitlán to have a garbage dump, a drainage system, and an environmental education agenda. The efforts of San Jorge, along with the efforts of other communities, have led to the creation of national organizations such as Coordinadora Nacional Indígena y Campesina (CONIC), and have attracted the a ention of foreigners with organizations such as Mayan Families. By striving to improve their immediate environment and learning about the global impact of their actions, the people of San Jorge La Laguna are providing both a physical and an ideological space for themselves in the future.

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India travels and transitioning Luxembourg

Appropriate thresholds and scales of change

Katy Fox

This is a new year’s letter written by the founder of the Centre for Ecological Learning Luxembourg (CELL) to the executive board on the occasion of a journey to India. CELL is an independent, volunteer-led grassroots nonprofit organization founded in 2010 and based in Beckerich. CELL’s scope of action is the Greater Region of Luxembourg, hence its mode of operating through decentralized action groups in order to establish and maintain community gardens, food co-ops, and other social-ecological projects in different parts of Luxembourg. CELL also develops and organizes various courses, provides consultancy services for ecological living, participates in relevant civil society campaigns, and does some practical research on low-impact living. The broad objective of CELL is to provide an experimental space for thinking, researching, disseminating, and practicing lifestyles with a low impact on the environment, and learning the skills for creating resilient post-carbon communities. CELL is inspired by the work of the permaculture and Transition Towns social movements in its aims to relocalize culture and economy and, in that creative process, improve resilience to the consequences of peak oil and climate change.

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Ana B. Amaya and Philippe De Lombaerde

English abstract: This introduction to the special section explores the nexus between global health governance and international health diplomacy. In these dynamic governance spaces, particular attention is paid to the multi-level and multi-actor character of global health governance and how health diplomacy functions in such a complex context. It is pointed out that the regional level plays both vertical (i.e., as an intermediary between the global and national levels) and horizontal (i.e., interregional) roles. The contributions to the special section develop the conceptual understanding of those interactions and analyze a number of concrete cases, including the African Union, ASEAN, the European Union, SADC, and UNASUR.

Spanish abstract: Esta introducción a la sección especial explora el nexo entre la gobernanza global de la salud y la diplomacia internacional de la salud. En estos espacios dinámicos de gobernanza, se presta especial atención al carácter multi-nivel y multiactor de la gobernanza sanitaria mundial y al funcionamiento de la diplomacia sanitaria en un contexto tan complejo. Se señala que el nivel regional desempeña funciones verticales (es decir, como intermediario entre los niveles mundial y nacional) y horizontales (es decir, interregionales). Las contribuciones en la sección especial desarrollan la comprensión conceptual de esas interacciones, así como analizan una serie de casos concretos, incluyendo la Unión Africana, la ASEAN, la Unión Europea, la SADC y la UNASUR.

French abstract: Cette introduction à la section spéciale explore le lien entre la gouvernance mondiale de la santé et la diplomatie internationale de la santé. Dans ces espaces dynamiques de gouvernance, une attention particulière est accordée au caractère multi-niveaux et multi-acteurs de la gouvernance mondiale de la santé et au fonctionnement de la diplomatie de la santé dans un contexte très complexe. Il est souligné que le niveau régional joue un rôle à la fois vertical (c’est-à-dire en tant qu’intermédiaire entre les niveaux mondial et national) et horizontal (c’est-à-dire interrégional). Les contributions à la section spéciale développent la compréhension conceptuelle de ces interactions et analysent un certain nombre de cas concrets, notamment l’Union africaine, l’ASEAN, l’Union européenne, la SADC et l’UNASUR.

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Barriers and borders

Human mobility and building inclusive societies

Anthony Turton

arrived into a space that had some unique characteristics. I was born into a white family in a country where race has always been an issue. I was born male, into a society where there were deeply entrenched rites of passage into manhood. I was born a

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Coronavirus with “Nobody in Charge”

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

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

The Editors’ Note is a space for us to introduce important themes addressed by the articles in each issue of Regions & Cohesion . We will, of course, complete this task. However, before doing so, we take this opportunity to write about our world

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Harlan Koff, Carmen Maganda, Philippe De Lombaerde, Edith Kauffer, and Julia Ros Cuellar

(often identity-based) spaces for policy making and for responding to the challenges of globalization. These responses can be either proactive and based on openness or rather defensive and based on the protection of regional autonomy. Sub

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Zenyram Koff Maganda

Parliament, which aims to empower young Europeans to be open-minded, tolerant, and active citizens. One area where more youth involvement is necessary is regional integration. A region can be a space inside a country, a country itself, or a territory