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  • Author: Rainer Baake
  • Publication Date: 03-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Imagine a mid-sized country. Its population, area, and energy consumption make it a flyweight compared to the emerging giants of China and India. Unlike Russia or Brazil, it possesses virtually no fossil fuels of its own – apart from disastrously dirty lignite and some expensive-to-extract hard coal. Furthermore, this country is located in Europe, a continent that has become synonymous with economic crisis and sluggish growth. Why do the energy policies of such a country – namely Germany – matter? The reason is in its dedication to systematically transform its energy system. It is the first major industrial country to seriously consider the challenge of overcoming the entire range of problems associated with fossil and nuclear fuels – from emissions to cost, from nuclear proliferation to nuclear waste, from environmental devastation to health impacts. If Germany, despite medium irradiation levels, limited land to grow biomass, and average wind and water resources, succeeds in transforming the energy system to renewable sources while maintaining system reliability and keeping an eye on cost, then every other country in the world will be able to follow on that track, too. And the challenges entailed for these countries will be significantly lower.
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, India, Brazil, Germany
  • Author: Kishore C. Dash
  • Publication Date: 03-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Increased bilateral trade can be a significant driver of peace between India and Pakistan. This is in stark contrast to the relative economic isolation that the two countries have pursued for so long.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, India
  • Author: Klaus Dodds
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The Arctic Council (AC) is an inter-governmental organization that, since its creation in 1996, has been widely recognized as one of the most progressive regional bodies in the world. The membership includes the eight Arctic states (A8), six permanent participants, and observer states such as the UK and Germany. From May 2013 onwards, there are also new permanent observers including China, India, Japan, and South Korea. The European Union's candidature has been delayed and subject to further review and assessment. The Council is chaired by one of the eight Arctic states for a two year period. The current chair is Canada (2013- 2015) and it will be followed by the United States (2015- 2017). The permanent participants, including the Inuit Circumpolar Council, Saami Council, and Aleut International Association, enjoy full consultative status and may address the meetings of the Council. Administrative support is provided by the Indigenous Peoples Secretariat (IPS), which is based in Copenhagen. The AC lies at the heart of debates about Arctic futures. It faces two challenges – institutional evolution and membership. For its supporters, the AC occupies center position in promoting an orderly and cooperative vision for the Arctic, but there is no shortage of commentary and punditry analyzing and predicting a rather different vision for the Arctic. As Paul Berkman asserted in the New York Times, under the heading “Preventing an Arctic Cold War,” there is little room for complacency. Berkman's analysis warned of Arctic and non-Arctic states being increasingly forced to confront difficult issues relating to policing, resource management, accessibility and navigability, alongside environmental protection. His suggestion at the end of the piece appeared, seemed rather odd, “[a]s the head of an Arctic superpower and a Nobel laureate, Mr. Obama should convene an international meeting with President Putin and other leaders of Arctic nations to ensure that economic development at the top of the world is not only sustainable, but peaceful.” Bizarrely, there is little analysis of how, and to what extent, the AC and other bodies, including the United Nations Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), are actively providing “rules of the road” (Berkman's phrase) for the Arctic region and beyond. This piece focuses on some issues that require further attention (such as the protection of the Arctic marine environment) while acknowledging how the AC has changed in the last few years. As a regional body, it operates in a strategic environment where few specialist observers believe that military conflict or destabilizing resource speculation is likely to prevail. Nonetheless, it is a work in progress with pressing demands to address. I will discuss debates about membership status and the institutional evolution to respond to experts' concerns about disasters (which might involve a shipping or drilling accident) and ongoing climate change, including manifestations such as sea ice thinning in the Arctic Ocean
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, United Kingdom, Canada, India, South Korea, Germany
  • Author: Stephen Blank
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The SCO grew out of a Chinese initiative (hence its name) from the late 1990s that brought together all the states that had emerged from the Soviet Union in 1991 and signed bilateral border-delimiting treaties with China: Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. In 2001, these states and Uzbekistan formally created the SCO. Since then it has added observer states—Mongolia, Afghanistan, India, Iran, and Pakistan—and dialogue partners—Turkey, Belarus, and Sri Lanka. The SCO's original mandate seemingly formulated it as a collective security organization pledged to the defense of any member threatened by secession, terrorism, or extremism—for example, from Islamic militancy. This pre-9/11 threat listing reflected the fact that each member confronted restive Muslim minorities within its own borders. That threat may indeed be what brought them together since China's concern for its territorial integrity in Xinjiang drives its overall Central Asian policy. Thus, the SCO's original charter and mandate formally debarred Central Asian states from helping Uyghur Muslim citizens fight the repression of their Uyghur kinsmen in China. Likewise, the charter formally precludes Russian or Chinese assistance to disaffected minorities in one or more Central Asian states should they launch an insurgency. In practice the SCO has refrained from defense activities and followed an idiosyncratic, even elusive, path; it is an organization that is supposed to be promoting its members' security, yet it is difficult to see what, if anything, it actually does. Officially published accounts are of little help in assessing the SCO since they confine themselves to high-flown, vague language and are short on specifics. We see from members' actual behavior that they primarily rely on bilateral ties with Washington, Beijing, or Moscow, or on other multilateral formations like the Russian-organized Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), itself an organization of questionable effectiveness. Therefore, this essay argues that the SCO is not primarily a security organization. Rather, it provides a platform and regulatory framework for Central Asian nations to engage and cope with China's rise and with Sino-Russian efforts to dominate the area. As such, it is attractive to small nations and neighboring powers but problematic for Russia and the United States. Analyzing the SCO's lack of genuine security provision, its membership expansion considerations, and Russia's decline in power will help clarify the organization's current and future roles.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Russia, United States, China, Iran, Washington, Central Asia, India, Shanghai, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Beijing, Tajikistan, Soviet Union, Moscow
  • Author: Sikander Kiani, Michael Brannagan
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: Politics, Non State Actors
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Middle East, India, Belgium
  • Author: Vivek Wadhwa
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Given the poor health of its economy and the rise of competitors like China and India, the United States needs high-skilled immigrants more than ever. After all, it is these immigrants who have fueled the country's technology boom and boosted its global advantage. Yet, American political leaders are so deeply embroiled in debates about the plight of low-skilled workers who have entered the country illegally, that immigration itself has become a political quagmire. There is a complete stalemate on immigration reform. Meanwhile, the number of high-skilled immigrants in the United States who are waiting to gain legal permanent residence now exceeds one million. The wait time for new immigrants from India in this category is now estimated to be seventy years. The result is that fewer high-skilled workers are coming to the United States, and the country is experiencing its first brain drain. The economic growth that could be taking place in the United States is now occurring in India and China. Consider that of all engineering and technology companies established in the United States between 1995 and 2005, 25.3 percent had at least one immigrant as a key founder. In Silicon Valley, this proportion was 52.4 percent. More than half of these founders initially came to the United States to study. Very few, 1.6 percent, came for the sole purpose of starting a company. They typically founded companies after working and residing in the United States for an average of thirteen years. This means that with the backlog of skilled workers waiting for legal permanent residence today, immigrants who would be starting companies are instead caught in “immigration limbo.” The temporary work visas these immigrants hold actually restrict them from working for the companies they start.
  • Political Geography: United States, China, America, India
  • Author: Shashi Tharoor
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Examining the increasing interconnectedness of India and Latin America's economic and diplomatic interests, a more robust tie between the two seems likely to emerge. Nevertheless, political and trade-related reform needs to take place before this partnership can reach fruition.
  • Political Geography: America, India, Latin America
  • Author: Siwa Msangi, Mandy Ewing
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: As global energy resources become increasingly scarce in the face of growing energy demand for transport fuel and other productive uses, many countries have begun to turn to the possibilities that biofuels from renewable resources could offer to supplement their domestic energy portfolio. While much of the recent literature has focused on the growth of biofuels in the developed world—mostly in ethanol, a substitute for gasoline made from sugar- or starch-based crops, and biodiesel, a substitute for diesel made from oil-based crops—developing nations have expressed growing interest in biofuel production as well. Although Brazil and the United States currently represent nearly 90 percent of ethanol production, and the European Union represents 90 percent of biodiesel production, China and India are expected to capture a growing share of production in these biofuels categories in the coming decades.
  • Political Geography: United States, China, India, Brazil
  • Author: Tom Daschle
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The primary foreign policy challenge confronting the United States in the next three decades is also our country's largest domestic policy challenge: climate change. In both arenas—foreign and domestic policy—we are in effect racing the clock, aware that the longer we delay action, the more costly the fixes at home will be, and the less able we will be to induce the kind of change necessary in China, India, and beyond.
  • Political Geography: United States, China, India