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Disturbances in Heaven. Made in China Yearbook 2016

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ISBN: 9781760461072 Year: DOI: 10.22459/MIC.02.2017 Language: English
Publisher: ANU Press
Subject: Law --- Political Science --- Social Sciences --- Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2017-04-06 11:01:29
License: ANU Press

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Labour and civil society are two fundamental components of international discussions concerning China today. Whether it is the arrest of labour activists or rights lawyers, the adoption of new industrial policies, or the passing of draconian rules on non-governmental organisations, the events occurring in these areas in China often make global headlines. At the same time, in spite of the grave challenges for workers and activists, the Chinese labour movement is witnessing significant developments, with the occurrence of some of the largest strikes in decades. All of this calls for more serious analysis from both scholars and practitioners, as well for critical engagement with a broader global audience interested in forging international solidarity. It is with these aims in mind that we have compiled this Made in China Yearbook 2016: Disturbances in Heaven, a collection of original articles by both scholars and activists, analysing the most important trends in Chinese labour and civil society over the past year. With its unique blend of in-depth scholarly work written in a direct, accessible style, this volume will allow readers to situate events and policies related to Chinese labour and civil society in a wider context, and serve as an indispensable reference book for international activists, practitioners, and policy-makers.

Keywords

labour --- civil society --- china

Chapter: 'Introduction' from book: Public Brainpower: Civil Society and Natural Resource Management (Book chapter)

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ISBN: 9783319606262 9783319606279 Year: Pages: 22 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-60627-9 Language: English
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-30 16:49:01
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This introductory chapter establishes the analytical framework for the edited volume. The literature on the resource curse and institutions is briefly discussed, along with the work on civil society and the public sphere by Almond and Verba, Dahl, Habermas and Putnam. Drawing on these classics, the theoretical concept of ‘public brainpower’ is formulated. The main pillar of public brainpower is polycentricity, or the coexistence of many different public actors freely expressing their thoughts: individual citizens, political parties, trade unions, charities, companies, research institutes, religious institutions, mass media and government institutions. The more polycentric a society is, the greater is its brainpower: its memory becomes more comprehensive and multifaceted, different actors can perform quality control of each other’s ideas and arguments, and it is more difficult to repress challenging views. Above all, a polycentric society has a broader base for creativity. The greater the public brainpower of a society, the better its management of natural resources. Finally, the book's 18 case studies of oil- and gas-producing countries are briefly presented, along with the methodology and definitions of key terminology used throughout the volume.

Chapter: 'Norway: Public Debate and the Management of Petroleum Resources and Revenues' from book: Public Brainpower: Civil Society and Natural Resource Management (Book chapter)

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ISBN: 9783319606262 9783319606279 Year: Pages: 28 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-60627-9_13 Language: English
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-30 16:54:11
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This chapter assesses the importance of civil society involvement and public debate for Norwegian petroleum governance. It finds that during the early years of the country’s oil and gas development, the most important choices were made by a small number of decision-makers in government with little input from the rest of society. The attitude of government officials was therefore decisive for Norway’s early successes. During the two first decades of Norway’s petroleum era, also economists at the Ministry of Finance, the Norwegian School of Economics, Statistics Norway and the University of Oslo played important roles. One of the greatest successes of Norwegian oil and gas governance, the sovereign wealth fund, was created by technocrats in interaction with politicians. However, over time, and in a way similar to the Netherlands, civil society and public debate came to play more influential roles. What characterizes contemporary Norwegian petroleum governance is that it has many legs to stand on: an active and diverse civil society, free and diverse media, many political parties representing differing interests, numerous institutions of research and higher education and, importantly, a strong technocracy inside and outside government. In combination, these legs provide for both reliability and dynamism as Norwegian petroleum governance evolves. Finally, a key aspect of Norway’s Nordic model is constant compromise—which is difficult to achieve in more polarized societies.

Chapter: 'Kazakhstan: Civil Society and Natural Resource Policy in Kazakhstan' from book: Public Brainpower: Civil Society and Natural Resource Management (Book chapter)

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ISBN: 9783319606262 9783319606279 Year: Pages: 19 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-60627-9_9 Language: English
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-30 16:57:32
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In Kazakhstan, civil society is held back and has had a limited role in the management of the petroleum sector. As this chapter notes, civil society has had little experience of promoting its own interests vis-à-vis the state, and public discussion of natural resource issues has been mainly government-driven. The fact that Kazakhstan made a notable step forward—from being a collapsing socialist economy in the 1990s to becoming a regional economic player with improved social and economic performance—has helped to legitimize non-transparent natural resource policies. As long as the socio-economic situation continues to improve or remains stable, the non-transparent management of natural resources is likely to be accepted by the population, which, like the Russian population, puts a premium on stability. The relative passivity of civil society has been compensated by Kazakhstan’s exposure to international initiatives and organizations such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and numerous UN agencies. As in Azerbaijan, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) has provided a platform for some civil society engagement with industry and government.

Chapter: 'Russia: Public Debate and the Petroleum Sector' from book: Public Brainpower: Civil Society and Natural Resource Management (Book chapter)

Authors: ---
ISBN: 9783319606262 9783319606279 Year: Pages: 28 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-60627-9_15 Language: English
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-30 17:00:32
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In Russia, civil society engagement with the petroleum sector is surprisingly rich and varied for a country that is ranked low on most democracy-related indicators. This chapter finds that there is a lively and varied public debate, with business associations, research institutes, independent experts, indigenous organizations and the few surviving independent media actively and often competently analysing and commenting on a broad range of issues related to the oil and gas sector. Russians were early users of social media, which occasionally also function as a platform for discussion of petroleum-policy issues. However, the real impact of civil society on decision-making and policy formulation in the petroleum sector is not as great as the diversity of actors and discussion might imply. One key reason is the tight government control over mainstream media outlets. The situation for free speech and civil society worsened steadily from around 2004 to 2016. As in neighbouring Kazakhstan, the Russian population puts a high premium on stability over freedom. While a central concern in this book is whether the media and civil society have any influence on the petroleum sector, in Russia the paradoxical situation is that the relationship is often reversed: the gas company Gazprom, rather than another organizational vehicle, is used by the government to control key mass media, and the oil company Yukos played a central role in promoting civil society until its main owner Mikhail Khodorkovsky was arrested and the company was carved up.

Back to Old Habits : Isolationism or the Self-Preservation of Burma’s Military Regime

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ISBN: 9782956447061 DOI: 10.4000/books.irasec.498 Language: English
Publisher: Institut de recherche sur l’Asie du Sud-Est contemporaine
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2019-12-06 13:15:36
License: OpenEdition Licence for Books

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This book argues that the Burmese military regime has always favoured an isolationist-type policy that finds its grassroots in Ne Win’s autarchic and xenophobic era as well as in Burma’s royal traditions, but without being completely cut off from the outside world. This policy approach is well suited to the Burmese authoritarian state which boasts an important strategic position in the region. In the past decade, the politics of “isolationism without isolation” has been skilfully developed by Burma’s military elite in order to preserve itself from both internal and external threats. Since the Depayin crackdown in May 2003, every step the Burmese junta has taken indicates that it has been consciously defining both its foreign policy and its internal political agenda according to these isolationist tendencies, as the recent fallbacks that followed the “Saffron Revolution” (September 2007) and the Cyclone Nargis (May 2008) illustrate. Not only does the military regime tend to strategically withdraw itself from the regional scene, by choosing only a few but crucial diplomatic and commercial partners like China, India, Singapore, Russia or Thailand, but it also gradually isolates itself from the rest of the Burmese society, by opting for a strategic and nationalist entrenchment which was perfectly highlighted by the purge of the pragmatic Military Intelligence Services (2004), the transfer of the capital to Naypyidaw (2005) and the strict control over the transitional process initiated by its own “Road Map towards a disciplined democracy” and undisrupted by the recent crises.

Keywords

democracy --- freedom --- Civil Society --- army --- junta --- autarchy

Gilded Age

Authors: ---
ISBN: 9781760461980 Year: Pages: 272 DOI: 10.22459/MIC.04.2018 Language: English
Publisher: ANU Press
Subject: Political Science --- Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2018-05-05 11:01:55
License: ANU Press

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According to the Chinese zodiac, 2017 was the year of the ‘fire rooster’, an animal often associated with the mythical fenghuang, a magnificently beautiful bird whose appearance is believed to mark the beginning of a new era of peaceful flourishing. Considering the auspicious symbolism surrounding the fenghuang, it is fitting that on 18 October 2017, President Xi Jinping took to the stage of the Nineteenth Party Congress to proclaim the beginning of a ‘new era’ for Chinese socialism. However, in spite of such ecumenical proclamations, it became immediately evident that not all in China would be welcome to reap the rewards promised by the authorities. Migrant workers, for one, remain disposable. Lawyers, activists and even ordinary citizens who dare to express critical views also hardly find a place in Xi’s brave new world. This Yearbook traces the stark new ‘gilded age’ inaugurated by the Chinese Communist Party. It does so through a collection of more than 40 original essays on labour, civil society and human rights in China and beyond, penned by leading scholars and practitioners from around the world.

Vietnam: One-Party State and the Mimicry of the Civil Society

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ISBN: 9782355960161 DOI: 10.4000/books.irasec.1026 Language: English
Publisher: Institut de recherche sur l’Asie du Sud-Est contemporaine
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2019-12-06 13:15:36
License: OpenEdition Licence for Books

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Are the issues of civil society, “good governance”, and the role of NGOs in Vietnam part of a discursive discourse that is linked to a growing development industry in which development studies and economics dominate? Kleinen questions these issues based upon longitudinal research in Vietnam since the early 1990s. In this study, an effort is made to explain the concrete interactions between authorities of the Vietnamese one-party state and its citizens by introducing an attitude of participants to conceal their real intentions with the intent to disguise their actions in order to obtain benefits for their own. Using the concept of mimicry the author tries to grasp what it means to live in a society where political and economic life is dominated by elite groups and were social change is coming from different directions. Two case studies are presented here: one in which local stakeholders of home stay tourism achieve their goals to develop an acceptable form of co-habitation with ethnic minorities without questioning the state. Another case study focuses upon the rapid urbanization of the periphery of Hanoi where land grabbing and private economic gains of outsiders are at loggerheads with local experiences and perceptions of state-village relationships. The question remains what it means for Vietnam's modernization and the prospects of a civil society.

Keywords

media --- politics --- Civil Society --- Press --- governance --- rights --- development --- ngo --- freedoms

The Politics of Silence : Myanmar NGOs' Ethnic, Religious and Political Agenda

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ISBN: 9782355960055 DOI: 10.4000/books.irasec.868 Language: English
Publisher: Institut de recherche sur l’Asie du Sud-Est contemporaine
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2019-12-06 13:15:36
License: OpenEdition Licence for Books

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The political regime in Myanmar used to be a seemingly monopolistic structure where power was exclusively in the Army’s hands. A marginal external influence was exercised by businessmen with close ties to the regime while the country is also exposed to the influence of powerful regional states. Since the General Elections in November 2010, the establishment of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar with a parliamentary democracy (which remains under some control of the Army, but with notable civilian representation) is the most noticeable change in Myanmar politics for decades as it may shift the state away from the Army monopoly, although concrete changes remain to be demonstrated.

Negotiating Women’s Veiling : Politics & Sexuality in Contemporary Indonesia

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ISBN: 9782355960109 DOI: 10.4000/books.irasec.981 Language: English
Publisher: Institut de recherche sur l’Asie du Sud-Est contemporaine
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2019-12-06 13:15:36
License: OpenEdition Licence for Books

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This study will focus on the Indonesian jilbab, an ubiquitous piece of cloth that covers the hair and neck of women tightly, leaving no skin unconcealed. Achievement and role of jilbab after the authoritarian regime of Soeharto in 1998 is hardly known. The author examines women perception but also the Sharia Ordinances and the narratives of censorship. Voices of both women and sexual minorities (transgenders, gays, lesbians, bisexuals and queers) finally demonstrate awareness of the politics of representation in contemporary Indonesia, highlighting the links between religion, politics and identity.

Keywords

politics --- gender --- democracy --- sexuality --- Civil Society --- Women --- rights --- Indonesia --- freedoms

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