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  • International Political Economy Zone

    So, When Does Russia Exhaust Its Forex Reserves?

    Sergey Lavrov, bang your shoe on the lectern for emphasis.Poor, poor Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. He spent most of his time lamenting the unfairness of this world during his visit to the UN over the weekend. Regardless of what you think about Russia's actions with regard to Ukraine--I think it's a money drain the Westerners should've been left to sort out if Russia had any sense--there's no doubting that its economy is in bad shape. It was already in recession a few months ago, and the additional sanctions from its largest trading partner, the European Union, will certainly not help.As much as Russia benefits from the ancien regime of the UN--the Security Council remains composed of the victors of WWII like itself, Russia has yet to break into that even more ...more

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  • Informed Comment

    The Other Iraq Reality: Shiite Militias besieging Sunni Towns

    By Erin Evers, HRW Shia militias, still operating under the control of former Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, are laying siege to Latifiyya, especially the Asa’ib Ahl al-Haqq militia. Failure to address the broader effects of international assistance in Iraq’s fight promises to further polarize Iraq’s communities. The spectacular conquests by the Islamic State have held much of the world’s attention ever since it took control of Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city. Adding to this attention are the US airstrikes in northern Iraq, where the group targeted minority populations, kidnapping and killing hundreds – maybe thousands – and displacing thousands more. But these high-profile killings and abductions are only part of the story of the horrendous abus...more

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  • Informed Comment

    Tony Blair obsessed with Religious “Crusade” against Iraq, like Bush: Former British Dep’ty PM

    Channel 4 News: “Former deputy prime minister John Prescott calls his ex boss Tony Blair a ‘crusader’ because of Blair’s recent calls to send troops back into the Iraq.” ‘Tony Blair is a crusader’ says John Prescott | Channel 4 News ...more

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  • The World

    Hong Kong protests 101

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  • Informed Comment

    Pretext for US Syria Bombings?: No sign that Dread “Khorasan” Group even Exists

    AJ+ Imran Khan “The Khorasan Group: The U.S. government insists it’s one of the biggest threats facing the country. But until a couple of weeks ago most people had never heard of it. We talk to Imran Khan, the Al Jazeera English correspondent in Baghdad, who has a theory about what is going on.” “> See also Glenn Greenwald and Murtaza Hussain at The Intercept ...more

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  • MEI Editor's Blog

    Hisham Melhem's Gloomy Prognosis on the State of Arab Civilization

    My very old friend Hisham Melhem  ("very old" in the sense of friends for a very long time, since graduate school, not in the geriatric sense, since he's a couple of years younger than I am), the Washington Bureau Chief of Al-Arabiya, is a veteran Arab journalist in Washington; in fact, the very first post on this blog dealt with his interview with President Obama just days after his first inauguration, the first granted to an Arab journalist.He has had a series of rather gloomy columns of late at Al-Arabiya, including one that has drawn US attention because it appeared at Politico: "The Barbarians within Our Gates: Arab civilization has collapsed. It won't recover in my lifetime."It's a grim prognosis and I hope he's wrong but fear he's right. He calls himself a C...more

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  • MEI Editor's Blog

    Headline of the Weekend: "Internationally Acclaimed barrister marries an actor"

    For the win, from Business Woman Media:The lead:Amal Alamuddin, a London-based dual-qualified English barrister and New York litigation attorney who has long been a high-profile figure in international refugee and human rights law, has gone against the trend for professional women in her field and married… an actor. Amal, 36, is an educated and successful career woman we’ve long admired. The high-flying barrister has notched up many career highs, including representing the controversial WikiLeaks whistleblower Julian Assange, and also has multilingual fluency in English, French and Arabic. She is also, of course, of Lebanese Druze origin....more

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  • MEI Editor's Blog

    This is Not a Tableau at Madame Tussaud's, though that Might Look More Lifelike

    This is one of the official photos from the opening of the Fourth Caspian Sea Summit in Astrakhan.Wax figures? Action figures for international affairs wonks? Or just a bunch of guys who are really, really, uncomfortable with each other?Aliyev of Azerbaijan (left), Putin, and Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan (2nd from right) look particularly unrealistic. Has Putin hired as his makeup man the guy who used to freshen up the Lenin tomb? He's stiff enough.Rouhani and Turkmen President Gurbanguly almost look human by comparison....more

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  • Foreign Policy

    Hollow Words and an Exponential Horror

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  • Foreign Policy

    Hollow Words and an Exponential Horror

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  • Foreign Policy

    Hollow Words and an Exponential Horror

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  • The World

    FT column: China’s biggest political challenge since Tiananmen in 1989

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  • Moneybox

    We May Never Know If Larry Ellison Flew a Fighter Jet Under the Golden Gate Bridge

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  • Foreign Policy

    'We Are Winning. But There's Always the Threat'

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  • Foreign Policy

    'We Are Winning. But There's Always the Threat'

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  • Foreign Policy

    'We Are Winning. But There's Always the Threat'

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  • Foreign Policy

    The Umbrella Revolution

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  • Foreign Policy

    The Umbrella Revolution

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  • Foreign Policy

    The Umbrella Revolution

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  • Moneybox

    Want to Be Stinking Rich? Major in Economics.

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  • Foreign Policy

    Obama’s Terrorism Alert System Has Never Issued a Public Warning -- Ever

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  • The World

    Smart Reads 29 September 2014

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  • The Arabist

    What makes the (un)Islamic State monstrous?

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  • International Political Economy Zone

    Drill Baby Drill! In the Philippines' Disputed Waters

    For a profit, would you dare to fight the Chinese?The mother of all "political risk"-laden investments is probably this one: Say a country embroiled in territorial disputes over potentially oil- and gas-rich waters auctions blocks for exploration. If you were an energy firm, would you dare bid and, more bravely, invest in disputed waters? Let's also add this complication: exploring these areas may anger the region's strongest power with its largest military. It's just asking for trouble, right? Better safe than sorry, eh?This situation is exactly what faces the Filipino-British concern Forum Energy PLC, whose chairman is one of the Philippines' savviest businesspersons, Manuel Pangilinan. After putting in a winning bid during auctions that most international energy majo...more

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  • China Matters

    From Xinjiang to Hong Kong, the PRC Reaps the Bitter Fruits of Alienation

    It’s becoming easier to understand why the PRC landed on Ilham Tohti, the Uyghur “public intellectual” like a ton of bricks.Judging from the admittedly selective excerpts used at the kangaroo court to damn him to “indefinite detention”, reported perhaps not inaccurately in the West as a “life sentence”, Ilham hoped to use his bully pulpit at a Xinjiang university to nurture a cadre of students with a strong sense of Uyghur identity, alienated from the PRC regime, and convinced of the right and need to agitate for greater Xinjiang autonomy in the face of an alien occupying power.Then, perhaps, Xinjiang politics would have evolved into the politics of perpetual, continually aggravated, and burgeoning grievance and ever-more-entrenched spirit of resistance t...more

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  • International Political Economy Zone

    Hong Kong Phooey: Rebel Yell vs Tycoon Pushback

    Armagideon time has come to the capital of capitalism--Hong Kong.[NOTE: Younger readers who don't get the post title's cartoon reference, head here.] Protester vs. cop action seems to be a growth area in Hong Kong and Singapore, capitalist shrines which normally care more about making money than about corny things like Western-style "freedom." But alas, order has been upended as the PRC has--surprise!--provided a rather conservative interpretation of "one country, two systems" that keeps the Communist Party's say in vetting Hong Kong's leader intact. I could have seen this coming as early as, oh, 1984. (RIP, Baroness Thatcher.) It is here where we most clearly see authoritarianism in action. First, the so-called disorder:Police used pepper spray and protesters threw pla...more

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  • Fabius Maximus

    “The Lone Ranger” shows Hollywood’s new paradigm, since films were too deep for us

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  • Moneybox

    The Whimsical Adventures of a Tube of Burt’s Bees Lip Balm

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  • Foreign Policy

    Russian Credibility on Ukraine Low at U.N. Meeting

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  • Foreign Policy

    Iraqi Prime Minister's Terror Warning Baffles Washington

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  • China Matters

    Saudi Arabia Switches to Plan B for IS and Syria

    From my ever interesting and amusing twitter feed @chinahand, with some minor edits:China Matters crystal ball tells me: 1) Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is switching from jihadi strategy to great power negotiations in response to IS fiasco2) KSA is saying, "OK, we'll help clean up our IS mess, but Assad's gotta go. Syria's a natural pickup for the Sunni side and belongs in KSA's sphere of influence.” 3) KSA's half-assed jihadi anarchy strategy for Syrian regime change has failed. Time for Plan B.4) As long as Assad getting billions in financial support, military assistance from Iran, he's not going anywhere. If Iran cuts off aid to Assad, he'll be out on the first plane to Moscow or wherever. 5) So I believe KSA is offering Iran peaceful coexistence in ME i...more

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  • Fabius Maximus

    A new world comes, probably one with no place for our “lords of finance”

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  • Fabius Maximus

    Listen to the slowing US economy, hear echoes of Japan

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  • The Arabist

    Saving lives in Aleppo

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  • China Matters

    The Meaning of Ilham Tohti’s Life Sentence

    Ilham Tohti, an economist and professor in Urumqi, is an advocate of Uyghur rights in Xinjiang.  He certainly did not deserve the life sentence he just received from the PRC for “advocating separatism”, not only because he was a distinctly non-violent working in the system type of guy, but also because he doesn’t advocate Xinjiang separatism.  Just the opposite, in fact.  Which, in the topsy-turvy world of PRC justice, is probably the reason why he got his life sentence.The drift of Ilham Tohti’s views—and the reason for the draconian sentence—are quite evident in interviews that Ian Johnson collected and compiled into an article for the New York Review of Books on the occasion of the court’s decision.Johnson characterizes his interlocutors...more

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  • Achenblog

    Planck satellite shows BICEP2 telescope may have seen dust, not the big bang

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  • The Arabist

    Lunch with the FT: Sir John Sawers

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  • Achenblog

    Taxi to orbit: NASA goes with Old Space and New Space (with a cameo by Jeff Bezos)

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  • Macro and Markets

    New Energy for Russian Sanctions

    Time will tell whether new sanctions on Russia announced by the United States and European Union last week will be a game changer. The most significant development concerns oil, as the new measures go much further than previously understood to shut down ongoing exploration and production of new Russian supply. While triggered by events on the ground in Ukraine, from a policy perspective this is a catch-up action, closing loopholes and bringing market practice more in line with the harsher intent of earlier measures. As such, I view the steps as an incremental, if logical, next step in the effort to punish Russia for its actions in Ukraine. Still, compared to what some energy companies thought they would be allowed to do, the new measures look to be material in terms of ...more

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  • Achenblog

    I shall wear my trousers rolled

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  • Rodger A. Payne's Blog

    2014 Louisville Sluggers

    This is my (very late) annual post about the Louisville Sluggers of the Original Bitnet Fantasy Baseball League. We draft twice each season -- once prior to the regular season and again at the beginning of July. I didn't get around to putting this post together until now. Sorry, though I doubt anyone cares. I'll just report draft results and transactions for the second half season -- my A season did not go all that well.Prior posts: 2013,  2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008,  2007, and 2004.Why do we draft twice each year? Well, the OBFLB crowns champions for both the "A" first half and "B" second half of the baseball season, divided by the All Star game. My team's most recent championship was in 2008B. The current team is all-but-assur...more

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  • Rodger A. Payne's Blog

    Anniversary

    Twenty-five years ago today, my spouse and I saw the Rolling Stones live -- with Living Colour as the warmup group. I've found several different websites that claim to have the setlist. This is from setlist.fm (it is supposed to automatically update when edited):Edit this setlist | More The Rolling Stones setlistsThis one, slightly different, is from someone who has a recording:01. Continental Drift02. Start Me Up03. Bitch04. Sad Sad Sad05. Undercover Of The Night06. Harlem Shuffle07. Tumbling Dice08. Miss You09. Ruby Tuesday10. Play With Fire11. Dead Flowers12. Mixed Emotions13. Honky Tonk women14. Midnight Rambler15. You Can’t Always Get What You Want16. Little Red Rooster17. Before They Make Me Run18. Happy19. Paint It Black20. Sympathy For The Devil21. Gimme ...more

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  • Macro and Markets

    The Geopolitical Paradox: Dangerous World, Resilient Markets

    Should we be worried by how well global markets are performing despite rising geopolitical volatility? I think so. In my September monthly, I look at the main arguments explaining the disconnect, and argue Europe is the region we should be most worried about a disruptive correction. Here are a few excerpts. • Far Away and Uncorrelated. Much of the market commentary has stressed that the risks that most worry political analysts—for example Russia, ISIL and Syria, Syria, an Ebola pandemic—are not necessarily central to global growth and market prospects. But small (in GDP terms)and far away does not mean inconsequential. As the debate over financial sanctions has shown, its Russia’s leverage and interconnectedness, rather than its global trade share, that makes c...more

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  • Rodger A. Payne's Blog

    New Sally Ride Book

    Lynn Sherr's book about Sally Ride has now been published, but I have not yet seen it. I have read a couple of reviews, including this one in the July/August The American Prospect.Sally Ride and I were both fellows at Stanford's Center for International Security and Cooperation beginning in September 1987 and Sherr interviewed me about the experience some time ago. Google Books tells me that my interview figured into a page or two of the book (see chapter 9).I'm not sure if Sherr recounted my favorite story, but Ride really embarrassed a Reagan administration official visiting CISAC and selling a version of the Strategic Defense Initiative. He was talking about elements of a space-based system that would have required payloads larger than the U.S. boosters had...more

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  • Macro and Markets

    Financing Ukraine: Time for an Honest Assessment

    Russia’s invasion of Ukraine (“incursion” is far too polite a term) represents a major intensification of the conflict and should cross all red lines the West has established.  The logic of the earlier, incremental approach—put modest sanctions in place, and let the threat of worse create a chilling effect on investment and trade—has reached a dead end.  Whether President Putin seeks a stalemate within Ukraine or something more menacing, full sectoral sanctions (including, importantly, Russia’s access to payments systems) should now be put in place as a firm signal of western resolve.  The real cost-benefit to be done is not the costs on the West compared to Russia. Rather it is those relative costs contrasted against doing nothing and risking a situation...more

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  • The Belgravia Dispatch

    What Tom Friedman's Interview Revealed About Obama's Foreign Policy

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  • The Moor Next Door

    New World Politics Review Piece

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  • The Belgravia Dispatch

    The Peace Process Ends: Not With a Bang, But a Whimper

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  • The Belgravia Dispatch

    The Horror: Iraq Class of '03 Mounts Rerun

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  • The Becker-Posner Blog

    Farewell

    In memoriam: Gary S. Becker, 1930-2014. The Becker-Posner blog is terminated. Richard A. Posner

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  • The Moor Next Door

    The Army and the Status Quo

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  • The Moor Next Door

    RND Sketch

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  • The Becker-Posner Blog

    Sabbatical Notice

    Starting this weekend, we will be taking a one-month sabbatical from blogging. We will resume at the end of that period.

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  • The Becker-Posner Blog

    The Embargo of Cuba: Time to Go- Becker

    The US embargo of Cuba began in 1960, a year after Fidel Castro turned this island toward communism. It was extended to food and medicines in 1962, the same year as the showdown with Russia over the installation of missiles there. The embargo has prevented American companies from doing business with Cuba, and discouraged tourism to Cuba. The American government also tried with quite limited success to prevent other countries from trading with Cuba. In general economic embargoes are undesirable because they interfere with free trade among countries. Yet a case could be made for an embargo against Cuba. Castro not only allowed Russian missiles to be installed in Cuba, just 90 miles from Florida, but was also actively trying to interfere in other countries by sending troop...more

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  • democracyarsenal.org

    Can the F-35 Replace the A-10?

    by Nickolai Sukharev  One of the big decisions the United States Air Force has considered over the last few months is whether to retire the A-10 Thunderbolt II fleet as a cost saving measure while developing and procuring the F-35A Lightening II. Given the Budget Control Act caps on Pentagon spending and the need to better allocate funds, officials have expressed their preference to prioritize multi-mission platforms in the inventory. But the problem is that the F-35A is not a replacement for the A-10’s close air support. The reason is simple: it lacks comparable capabilities despite a higher operating cost. Given the constrained budgetary environment, the comparative cost to maintain and operate the two aircraft should be a decisive consideration. The A-10 is a...more

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  • democracyarsenal.org

    After Geneva Talks A Consensus on Moving Forward

    By Homa Hassan The two-day round of P5+1 negotiations with Iran just concluded in Geneva and Western diplomats are carefully reviewing a detailed proposal presented by Iran. As this proposal is being reviewed ahead of the follow-on meetings in November it is important to look at what the realistic prospects of a deal will look like. Going into this week’s talks, a number of commentaries came out attempting to set negotiations up for failure. However, it is widely agreed that a negotiated solution to Iran’s controversial nuclear program is the best way to achieve a sustainable solution and a recent survey of reports and recommendations from bipartisan think tanks and high-level experts demonstrates a broad consensus on how to approach negotiations a...more

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  • democracyarsenal.org

    TPP, TTIP and Getting America's Competitiveness Back on Track

    By Marcela Heywood Last week’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bali, Indonesia marked further progress for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and set an ambitious goal to finish negotiations by the end of the year. Although the U.S. government shutdown – and President Obama’s absence in Bali – did not hinder the trade talks, it did call America’s credibility into question. Government shutdown could threaten both TPP and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations by displaying uncertainty in U.S. economic and foreign policy priorities. Congress needs to reach an agreement and prioritize TPP and TTIP, as they are necessary policy initiatives to boost American competitiveness, stimulate the economy, and exert soft power to cr...more

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  • International Political Economy at the University of North Carolina

    Why US Financial Hegemony Will Endure

    Will and I have a piece, now ungated, over at a fantastic new online magazine called Symposium. Our article translates much of the main points of our Perspectives Piece (co-authored with Thomas and Andy Pennock) for popular consumption. We are also blogging over there this week in support of the article. Please do check out our writing this week on the magazine's website, as well as the other great content on the site....more

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  • International Political Economy at the University of North Carolina

    Foreign Direct Investment, Human Rights, INGOs

    One of the major areas of underdeveloped research within political science is the interaction between non-state actors. From an international political economy perspective, the literature has largely ignored the interaction of various non-state actors that are growing in importance, and its effects on different forms of trade. In a recently published article "Avoiding the Spotlight: Human Rights Shaming and Foreign Direct Investment" by Colin Barry, Chad Clay and Michael Flynn, they lay the foundation for examining this interaction. They examine the interaction between non-state actors (INGOs) and multinational corporations (MNCs) and the extent to which private actors' choices to invest in countries are affected by the reputational costs of doing business in those...more

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  • International Political Economy at the University of North Carolina

    Verizon, Vodafone, and Measuring FDI

    Recently back from APSA in Chicago, I've been reflecting on the state of our knowledge about FDI (or perhaps more accurately, cross-border management stakes in enterprises). That, and working on my dissertation, applying for academic jobs, and teaching. Oh, and telling everyone who'll listen about my Optimus Prime sighting on Michigan Ave.Anyway, I find a post-conference review of the discipline is generally a good way to consider potentially fruitful lines of new inquiry. In my experience, the quality of papers at conferences can be rather hit-or-miss. This generally fits into my view of conferences as important sources of external deadlines for getting drafts done as well as interacting with other scholars in more informal settings such as the hotel bar/lobby/over-cro...more

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  • The Duck of Minerva

    Why Defining Terrorism Matters

    This is a guest post by Karolina Lula, a PhD student at Rutgers-Newark.---------------The terrorism industry has grown exponentially since 9/11.  Whenever a terrorist attack occurs, a plethora of terrorism scholars eagerly spoon out their collective wisdom.  The chance to be included in the over-caffeinated media spotlight justifies decades cooped up in small offices pouring over data. In a certain respect, terrorism scholars mirror their subject.  They both love an audience.              Despite their growing presence in the media, academics fail to persuade others about what terrorism is in the first place.  Language evolves and academia is only one source of influence.  T...more

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  • The Duck of Minerva

    Planning to be Shocked

    One of the most repeated, and most dubious, axioms about strategy is the notion that being proactive is wiser than being reactive, and that reactivity is something we should be allergic to. In the words of Briain's foreign secretary William Hague, 'the nation that is purely reactive in foreign policy is in decline.' Likewise, written into the folklore of the US foreign policy establishment is the notion that the 'strategic shocks' that struck America - such as Imperial Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor or 9/11 - happened because Washington was passively sleeping. A quick read of Presidential speeches on the anniversary of that attack shows how powerful the creed of active vigilantism lives on, even if it doesn't power all of America's day to day behaviour.Never mind that a...more

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  • The Duck of Minerva

    Quick Note

    If you haven't been seeing any posts for a few months, that's because we moved to http://www.whiteoliphaunt.com/duckofminerva/. Some readers have informed us that the redirect may not be behaving for some subset of RSS feed readers. If that's the case, you can subscribe to the new feed at http://www.whiteoliphaunt.com/duckofminerva/?feed=rsshttp://whiteoliphaunt.com/duckofminerva/?feed=rss...more

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  • Political Animal

    Wednesday's Mini-Report

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  • Political Animal

    The need for partisan cover

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  • Political Animal

    House rebuffs Boehner, scraps F-35 Jet Engine Program

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Otaviano Canuto

Otaviano Canuto is Senior Advisor on BRICS Economies in the Development Economics Department, World Bank, a new position established by President Kim to bring a fresh research focus to this increasingly critical area. He also has an extensive academic background, serving as Professor of Economics at the University of Sao Paulo and University of Campinas (UNICAMP) in Brazil.

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