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NTS-Asia Newsletter

NTS-Asia Newsletter No.23

Click here for the PDF version.

Contents:
The NTS-Asia Newsletter Team
Mely Caballero-Anthony, Cheryl Lim, Sofiah Jamil and Steven Poh.

Websites:

Upcoming Events

Forum on ‘Geostrategic Issues and Interests: The Bangladesh Perspective’

Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS)
2 October 2010
Bangladesh

The strategic and security landscape is going through fundamental shifts and changes in the 21st century. As the security agenda expands in functional terms which may alter strategic stakes and capabilities, the constant updating of strategic ideas and thoughts is required. BIPSS is launching the ‘BIPSS Strategic Forum’ with the objective of nurturing a new generation of young strategic/security analysts. The forum aims to create a new generation of thinkers and young professionals specialised in security issues and equipped with innovative modelling and analytical skills for strategic analysis.

These interactive forum meetings will be held twice a month. The first meeting of this strategic forum will be held on 2 October at 11 am (participation will be selective). The theme of the first meeting is ‘Geostrategic Issues and Interests: The Bangladesh Perspective’.

Queries and questions on the forum may be addressed to info@bipss.org.bd or to the Forum Coordinator, Ms Shawon Shyla at shawon@bipss.org.bd.


Public Forum and Workshop on ‘Securing Food Futures in the Asia-Pacific:
Evaluating Regional Frameworks for Food Security’

RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
in collaboration with
Department of International Relations, Australian National University (ANU)
6 – 8 October 2010
Australia

Co-organised by the Department of International Relations, Australian National University; and the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies with support from the Japan Foundation (under its Intellectual Exchange Programme) and the MacArthur Foundation (under its Asia Security Initiative), ‘Securing Food Futures in the Asia-Pacific: Evaluating Regional Frameworks for Food Security’ to be held from 6 to 8 October is a response to the need for continued efforts to exchange and evaluate information on best practices and to identify and address emerging issues related to food security. This project will result in improved knowledge of the kinds of regional governance arrangements that are required to guarantee a resilient and secure food system and to protect those who are most vulnerable to food scarcity. The project will also lead to specific and relevant evidence-based policy recommendations to enhance regional efforts in addressing the complex issue of food security in the Asia-Pacific.

The event will commence with the public forum which will focus on an overview of food security in the Asia-Pacific and then on country-specific perspectives (Japan and Australia) on regional food security. This will be followed by the workshop which will delve into the issues of the challenges for building food security and resilience through regional cooperation, regional food security initiatives and an evaluation of food security frameworks.

Click here to read more about the event.
Click here for the public forum and workshop programme.


Workshop on ‘Enriching Democratic Practice in South Asia:
Possibilities from the Field of Peacebuilding’

Women in Security, Conflict Management and Peace (WISCOMP)
30 – 31 October 2010
India

WISCOMP, an initiative of The Foundation for Universal Responsibility of His Holiness The Dalai Lama, is organising a South Asian Peacebuilding Workshop titled ‘Enriching Democratic Practice in South Asia: Possibilities from the Field of Peacebuilding’ in New Delhi on 30 and 31 October 2010. The two-day workshop seeks to empower youth leaders from the region with the skills and expertise to contribute to conflict prevention, resolution and transformation efforts. The focus will be on the ways in which the field of peacebuilding, which embraces the above frameworks, can contribute to strengthening and enriching the contours of democracy in the countries of the South Asian region.


4th Annual Convention of the Consortium of NTS-Asia

RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Secretariat of the Consortium of NTS-Asia
25 – 26 November 2010
Singapore

The NTS-Asia Secretariat based in the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies will be organising with support from the Ford Foundation, the 4th Annual Convention of the Consortium of Non-Traditional Security Studies in Asia (NTS-Asia). To be held from 25 to 26 November 2010 at Traders Hotel, Singapore, this important annual event will be an opportunity for members to take stock of the salient NTS issues that affect the Asia-Pacific region. Topics that have been proposed for discussion during the event include: Global Architecture and Non-Traditional Security; Climate Change and Security; Transnational Crime; Conflict Prevention and Resolution; as well as Human Rights and Human Security.

Click here for the convention programme.
Click here to find out more about the Consortium of NTS-Asia.


Regional Workshop on ‘Dealing with Energy Vulnerabilities:
Case Studies of Cooperation and Collaboration in East Asia’

RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
9 – 10 December 2010
Singapore

Credit: Aleksandar Rodic, 2009
Conventional approaches to analysing East Asian energy security dynamics tend to begin and end with the identification of areas and sources of geopolitical competition and how potential military conflicts could arise from this. Analytical perspectives that emphasise potential risks and problems are useful, particularly for knowing how East Asia evolves in the global security scene. However, it is necessary to explore the dynamics of cooperation, in order to contribute to conflict avoidance, if not resolution, in the region.

As such, this project endeavours to examine interstate cooperation and collaboration in East Asia against the backdrop of continuing geopolitical uncertainties and tension. Specifically, this project aims to examine how transnational projects of energy cooperation and collaboration have taken place in East Asia, despite the emphasis on geopolitics in determining policy. It is hoped that findings obtained from this project can stimulate debates about energy policymaking and institutionalisation in the region, and add value to contemporary energy security studies in East Asia.

To be held in Park Royal Hotel Singapore, this workshop marks the second phase of the project where commissioned writers from the initial energy inception group meeting in June 2010 will present their research findings from research conducted over the course of six months. Comments and discussions from the workshop will be taken into consideration by commissioned writers as they finalise their research papers to be included in an edited book volume by the first half of 2011.

Click here for the workshop programme.
Please note that the workshop is open to invited participants only.


BIPSS-ICRC Conference on the ‘Management of Complex Emergencies’

Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS)
In collaboration with
International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
13 – 14 December 2010
Bangladesh

The management of complex emergencies is increasingly becoming an important issue in current international affairs. It is characterised by extreme vulnerability due to intrastate conflicts and natural or man-made disasters that can considerably breakdown the authority or capacity of the state in these situations. Against this backdrop, BIPSS will be organising a two-day International Conference on ‘the Management of Complex Emergencies’ in collaboration with ICRC from 13 to 14 December 2010. The objective of this conference is to promote a better understanding of how to mitigate and respond to modern-day complex emergencies. The conference will be the first of its kind in Bangladesh and will be attended by subject-based experts and practitioners from many countries including Bangladesh, Switzerland, India, Pakistan, China, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Indonesia, Myanmar, Afghanistan and others. The delegations will comprise academics and representatives from government agencies, the armed forces, NGOs, media and international organisations.

BIPSS also welcomes international observers and delegates who are interested to participate in the conference.
Click here to register for this event.


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Announcements

Launch of the New RSIS Centre for NTS Studies Website and Blog

The new website of the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies was launched on 22 September 2010. In a fresh new  format with simple, intuitive navigation, the website provides up-to-date and  comprehensive information on the Centre’s work on non-traditional security (NTS) and  its related programmes of climate change, environmental security and natural  disasters; energy and human security; internal and cross-border conflict; and  health and human security. The new website also features a new research tool for web users – the NTS Resource Database – which is an e-library of more than 1,000 external and in-house publications and policy and academic research material on NTS issues. Visit the new website at www.rsis.edu.sg/nts.

The NTS Bloggers

In the same month, the Centre launched a blog under the MacArthur Asia Security Initiative. The NTS blog is a platform for academic scholars and researchers to voice their views on the most pertinent NTS issues of today. These include energy and environmental security, transnational crime, food and water security, health security, and internal and cross-border conflict.

To view the latest blog entries on ‘ASEAN and the EU, Moving beyond State Integration’ and ‘Working towards Reducing Maternal Mortality, please click here.



CISS PhD Candidate Ben Shepherd in the Philippines

Centre for International Security Studies (CISS) PhD candidate and 2010 NTS-Asia Research Fellow Ben Shepherd is currently conducting a three-month research fellowship with Consortium member-institute, the Institute for Strategic and Development Studies (ISDS) in Quezon City in the Philippines. Ben is keeping a blog of his time in the Philippines; outlining his research activities and providing insights into his life as an NTS-Asia Research Fellow.

Click here to read more about his research fellowship experience.


New Video Interviews in the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies ‘In Conversation’ Series

This latest collection of ‘In Conversation’ interviews by the RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies showcases the views of experts and scholars on the issues of food security and the protection of civilians. The interviews were conducted on the sidelines of the ‘Food Security Expert Group Meeting on Food First: Ensuring Food and Nutrition for Urbanites' (4 – 5 August) and the ‘Regional Workshop on the Protection of Civilians’ (15 – 16 July) respectively. Video interviewees from both events include Gil Saguiguit Jr, Director of the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA); Prince Norodom Sirivudh from Cambodia; and Mr Rafendi Djamin, ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) Commissioner for Indonesia.

Click here to watch the interviews.

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Recent Events

Singapore Global Dialogue

S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS)
23 – 24 September 2010
Singapore

The inaugural Singapore Global Dialogue was concluded last week with over 400 delegates gathering to discuss issues of global significance. Organised by RSIS, the Singapore Global Dialogue aims to be Asia-Pacific’s eminent platform for unique perspectives from across the region on contemporary strategic issues that transcends the region’s borders. It has gathered renowned policymakers, leading practitioners and opinion formers from all across the world, with delegates drawn from government policy sectors, security forces, think tanks and NGOs.

The Singapore Global Dialogue’s opening keynote address, ‘The Evolution of the International Landscape and the Role of China’ was delivered by Tang Jiaxuan, Former State Councillor, Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, People’s Republic of China. The Honourable John Howard, Former Prime Minister of Australia, delivered the World Leader Keynote Address ‘Strategic Challenges of the Region’.

Dean of RSIS, Barry Desker (left) with Former Prime Minister of Australia, John Howard (right)
Speakers at the Singapore Global Dialogue included eminent individuals such as Dr Paul Wolfowitz, Former President of the World Bank; His Excellency M. K. Narayanan, Former National Security Advisor who is currently the Governor of West Bengal, India; Ambassador Christopher Hill, Dean of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies and Former US Ambassador to Iraq; Andrew Sheng, Former Chairman of the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong and Chief Adviser to the China Banking Regulatory Commission; Dr Nur Hassan Wirajuda, Indonesia’s Former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Professor Tommy Koh, Ambassador-at-Large at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Singapore.

The Singapore Global Dialogue came to a close with Singapore’s Minister for Finance Tharman Shanmugaratnam delivering the closing address.

Click here for more information on the Singapore Global Dialogue.


Lecture on ‘Education in Bangladesh: Present State, Challenges and Future Outlook’

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS)
21 September 2010
Bangladesh

As part of BIISS’ Eminent Person’s Lecture Programme, Mr Nurul Islam Nahid, Member of Parliament and Honourable Minister, Ministry of Education, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, delivered a lecture on ‘Education in Bangladesh: Present State, Challenges and Future Outlook’ in BIISS on 21 September 2010. The lecture was followed by a lively question and answer session in which there was active participation by members of the academia and media, government officials, diplomats, businessmen, representatives from civil society and other concerned professionals including experts and practitioners in the field of education. Maj-Gen. Golam Mohammad, nwc, psc, BIISS Director-General delivered the welcome address and Maj-Gen. Muhammed Firdaus Mian, psc, Chairman, BIISS Board of Governors chaired the session.

Click here to read the welcome address.


BIPSS Participates in International Alert Dialogue and
Sangam Institute for Policy Analysis and Strategic Studies Conference

Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS)
3 and 4 September 2010
Nepal

Maj-Gen. Muniruzzaman at the IA Dialogue
BIPSS President Maj-Gen. Muniruzzaman was invited by International Alert (IA) UK to the ‘Third Dialogue on Climate Change, Conflict and Fragility’ in Kathmandu, Nepal on 3 September 2010. He spoke at the ‘Climate, Governance and Resilience Roundtable’. Representatives from the South Asia Network on Security and Climate Change (SANSAC) presented new case studies from across the region to contribute to discussions on the interaction between climate change, fragility and security at the state level. Maj-Gen. Muniruzzaman also spoke at the Sangam Institute for Policy Analysis and Strategic Studies in Kathmandu, Nepal on 4 September 2010. He delivered a presentation on ‘Transnational Security: The Challenge for Nation States’.




RSIS Centre for NTS Studies Visits ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta and Attends 2nd Meeting of ‘the GCST Working Group on Regional Security’ in Buenos Aires

RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
30 August, 16 – 17 August 2010
Indonesia and Argentina

Assoc. Prof. Mely Caballero-Anthony from RSIS Centre for NTS Studies (right) and Prof. Carolina Hernandez of ISDS Philippines (left) in Buenos Aires
On 30 August, Assoc. Prof. Mely Caballero-Anthony, Head of the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies, and Prof. Paul Teng, Senior Fellow in Food Security in the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies, visited the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretariat in Jakarta and met with Dr Somsak Pipoppinyo, Director of the Finance, Industry and Infrastructure Directorate, ASEAN Economic Community Department. Assoc. Prof. Caballero-Anthony also attended the 2nd Meeting of ‘the Global Consortium on Security Transformation (GCST) Working Group on Regional Security from Above and Below’, held in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 16 to 17 August.


 

 

 


Intercommunity Dialogue on ‘Symbol and Substance: Exploring Inter-community Relations in Ladakh’

Women in Security, Conflict Management and Peace (WISCOMP)
27 – 28 August 2010
India

WISCOMP organised an Intercommunity Dialogue titled ‘Symbol and Substance: Exploring Inter-community Relations in Ladakh’ at Leh, Jammu and Kashmir, from 27 to 28 August 2010.  The meeting brought together community, religious and youth leaders with a view to understand the dynamics of Buddhist-Muslim relations in the region and to rekindle the spirit of co-existence in the current context as a flash flood has caused widespread destruction in the Ladakh and Kargil districts. The meeting was attended by women’s groups, media representatives, academics, advocates, civil servants, development practitioners and business associates from both districts.

Since 2000, WISCOMP has been engaging with the civil society sectors in Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh to build constituencies of peace. A major focus in this peacebuilding effort has been to motivate stakeholders to use dialogue as a tool for sharing perspectives, aspirations and political goals, and creating common ground.

The initiative in Leh, Ladakh was also designed with the purpose of bringing together Buddhist and Muslim communities from different parts of Ladakh to discuss inter-community relations for peacebuilding in the region. The flashfloods provided a new context for exploring inter-community harmony as natural disasters often expose the vulnerability of these communities and re-emphasise the reality of interdependence. Participants at the meeting made a commitment to work together for the relief and rehabilitation of the victims of the flash floods and to work together in future on active co-existence through various means. WISCOMP proposes to create a group of individuals and organisations that commit themselves to sustainable peace in Ladakh.


Panel Discussion on ‘Causes, Consequences and Challenges of Demographic Explosion in Bangladesh:
Policy Prescriptions and Future Outlook’

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS)
5 August 2010
Bangladesh

A Panel Discussion on ‘Causes, Consequences and Challenges of Demographic Explosion in Bangladesh: Policy Prescriptions and Future Outlook’ was organised by BIISS on 5 August 2010. Prof. Syed Modasser Ali, Adviser to the Honourable Prime Minister on Health and Family Welfare, and Social Welfare Affairs, the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, graced the occasion as Chief Guest. Maj-Gen. Golam Mohammad, nwc, psc, BIISS Director-General delivered the welcome address. Two papers were presented during the panel discussion. The first paper titled ‘Causes, Consequences and Challenges of Demographic Explosion in Bangladesh’ was presented by Mr Mohammad Abdul Qayyum, Former Director-General, Directorate General Family Planning, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare; and currently National Project Director, Comprehensive Disaster Management Project (CDMP), Disaster Management Bureau, Mohakhali, Dhaka. The second paper ‘Demographic Explosion in Bangladesh: Policy Prescriptions and Future Outlook’ was presented by Mr Fakrul Ahsan, Division Chief, General Economics Division, Planning Commission, Ministry of Planning, Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, Dhaka. The designated discussants for the first and second paper were Prof. A.K.M. Nurun Nabi, Department of Population Sciences, University of Dhaka and Prof. M. Kabir, Member, National Population Council, Dhaka respectively. The presentations were followed by a lively and interactive open-floor discussion. Distinguished scholars, policymakers, diplomats, representatives of multi-disciplinary professional bodies and the media participated in the discussion. Prof. Muzaffer Ahmad, Former Chairman, Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) and Member, BIISS Board of Governors, chaired the session.

Click here to access the speeches and presentations delivered at the panel discussion.


4th Annual Michael Hintze Lecture in International Security:
‘A Gathering Storm: China's Challenge to US Power in Asia’

Centre for International and Strategic Studies (CISS)
4 August 2010
Australia

The 4th Annual Michael Hintze Lecture delivered by University of Chicago Prof. John Mearsheimer to over 450 people discussed the balance of power in Asia and how it is expected to change significantly over the next few decades as China increases its military capabilities. Prof. Mearsheimer argued Australia should worry that China and the US might end up in an escalating strategic competition laden with the potential for miscalculation.

Prof. Mearsheimer is considered a bold and controversial American thinker in the field of international relations and an authority on US foreign policy and national security. His book, The Israeli Lobby and US Foreign Policy, which he co-authored with Stephen Walt of Harvard University aroused furious debate, and has been translated into 17 languages.

Click here to listen to the podcast.
Click here to watch the video.


Food Security Expert Group Meeting on 'Food First: Ensuring Food and Nutrition for Urbanites'

RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
4 – 5 August 2010
Singapore

The RSIS Centre for NTS Studies convened a two-day Food Security Expert Group Meeting on ‘Food First: Ensuring Food and Nutrition for Urbanites’ in Singapore from 4 to 5 August 2010. The two-day meeting focused on two aspects of food security namely urban food security and food security information systems. It examined the context of urban food security relative to global food security and rural food security, explored the development of an ASEAN Integrated Food Security Management Information System, assisted in developing a research agenda on urban food security, including identifying potential projects and collaborators, and identified possible roles for Singapore in the global food system.

The meeting was attended by experts, resource persons and participants from multilateral groups such as the World Food Programme (WFP), the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC) and the ASEAN Food Security Information System (AFSIS); bilateral groups such as the International Development Research Centre (IDRC); international and regional research institutions such as the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA); universities such as the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU); local and international agribusiness firms; and relevant Singaporean government agencies.

Click here to access the executive summary and the presentations delivered at the meeting.


Research Staff from RSIS Centre for NTS Studies Graduate with RSIS Master’s

RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
July 2010
Singapore

From left: PK Hangzo, Sofiah Jamil and Kevin Punzalan
Master’s students cum former research analysts at the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies – Kevin Punzalan, PK Hangzo and Sofiah Jamil – graduated from RSIS in July after two years of part-time study. Kevin and PK received their MSc in Strategic Studies while Sofiah received her MSc in International Relations.

Kevin has since returned to his alma mater, the De La Salle University in Manila, Philippines, to teach European History and the Evolution of Security and Conflict in the 20th Century. Sofiah and PK are now full-time Associate Research Fellows with the Centre. Sofiah will conduct research in the NTS fields of energy and climate change and continue to co-manage the Consortium of NTS-Asia Secretariat, while PK will focus his research on internal and cross-border conflict, migration, transnational crime, human trafficking as well as food and water security.


Asia-Pacific Centre for R2P Constituency Building in the Philippines

Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (APR2P)
24 June 2010
The Philippines

APR2P’s Executive Director, Dr Noel Morada, recently undertook a range of constituency building activities with regard to the Responsibility to Protect (RtoP) in the Philippines in June 2010. Dr Morada gave a lecture on RtoP to foreign service officers at the Philippines’ Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in Manila on 24 June. The Centre also secured the commitment of the current director of the Foreign Service Institute (FSI) for an RtoP programme in the Center for International Relations and Strategic Studies (CIRSS) that will promote awareness about RtoP in government through research and seminars. The Centre will also help FSI in the design of materials and seminar modules on RtoP. Dr Morada also met with academics and students from the University of the Philippines in preparation for the second RtoP national workshop in Manila to be held in November. A core group of students from the university also initiated an RtoP nation-wide student coalition.
 
For more information about the Philippines country programme, recent updates, and current initiatives, please click here, or contact the Executive Director, Dr Noel Morada at n.morada@uq.edu.au.

 

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Recent Publications

Human Security in India: Health, Shelter and Marginalisation
Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS)
Monirul Hussain, Akhil Ranjan Dutta et al., South Asia Human Security Series, 2010

This book examines human security in India in relation to health, the homeless and disabled, women and children, and internally displaced persons (IDPs) among other things.

 

Human Security: Key Drivers, Antecedents and Conceptualization
Institute for Human Security (IHS) and Centre for Dialogue, La Trobe University
Stephen James, Working Paper No.1, 2010

This background paper was written for a human security workshop held on 8 June in La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. It was written as part of a larger research project exploring the theory and practice of human security, its meaning and utility for governments, international and regional organisations, the third sector and civil society. The project is funded by an Australian Research Council Linkage Learned Academies Special Projects grant with the support of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences, IHS at La Trobe University and other partners. It explores the meaning and utility of human security as a response to NTS threats to states and human beings – threats that have arisen and become more visible to scholars and policymakers monitoring a globalising and interdependent world.

 

Worldfish Center Publications Catalogue 2009
Worldfish Center, Catalogue, 2010

This catalogue lists publications published by The WorldFish Center and papers contributed by the Center’s scientists in 2009. It reflects the outcomes of research carried out in collaboration with partners from 27 countries through the generous support from international investors; the majority of which are members of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR).

 

Adaptation of Floodplain Fishing Communities to Hydro-Climatic Changes in the Niger Basin: Lessons Learned
Worldfish Center, Report, 2010

The river floodplain ecosystems of the Sahelian region have recently undergone two major hydrological changes. The first is an increased inter-annual variation in rainfall. The second phenomenon is the construction in the second half of the 20th century of a number of dams and increasing water abstraction from the upstream catchments of most large West African rivers. Faced with such major changes in the hydrological regime, the question is whether fishers are able to adapt. This report examines the main characteristics of fishers’ current livelihood strategies on the assumption that looking at the past can generate lessons for the future.

 

Assessment of Access to Health Services and Vulnerabilities of Female Fish Traders in the Kafue Flats, Zambia
Worldfish Center
A. Lungu and S.M.C. Hüsken, Analysis Report, 2010

Under the regional programme ‘Fisheries and HIV/AIDS in Africa: Investing in Sustainable Solutions’, the WorldFish Center conducted this study on access to health services and vulnerabilities of female fish traders in the Kafue Flats floodplains in Zambia. This report outlines and analyses the particular vulnerabilities of female fish traders in the Kafue Flats fishery and formulates recommendations to facilitate stakeholder uptake of strategic responses to tackle the drivers of the epidemic in fishing communities and improve the livelihoods of fisherfolk and fish traders in the Kafue Flats and other fisheries in Zambia.

 

The Contribution of Fish Intake, Aquaculture, and Small-scale Fisheries to Improving Food Nutrition Security: A Literature Review
Worldfish Center
Nozomi Kawarazuka, Working Paper No. 2106, 2010

Much of fish consumed by the poor are caught by household members and traded in local markets. These fish are rarely or poorly included in national statistics, and it is therefore difficult to estimate precisely the real contribution of fish to rural poor households. This report is the first global overview of the role played by fish in improving nutrition. Fish consumption patterns of the poor, the nutritional value of fish, and small-scale fisheries and aquaculture activities are considered. It also highlights the gap in knowledge where more research is needed.

 

Do Nutrition and Health Affect Migrant Workers' Incomes? Some Evidence from Beijing, China
Institute of World Economic and Politics (IWEP)
Shi Zheng, Zhigang Wang et al., China and World Economy, Vol. 18, Issue 5, pp. 105 – 24, September – October 2010

Migrant workers have become a major element of the labour force in Chinese cities, making important contributions to the economy while forming a socially disadvantaged group. Existing research on the relationship between the level of nutrition and health and income in China mainly focuses on farmers living in rural areas. Based on a Mincer equation and using a survey in Beijing, this paper examines the relationship between migrant workers' nutrition and health levels and their monthly incomes. It was discovered that the nutrition intake and the body mass index have positive effects on income while duration of illness and daily working hours have negative effects. These conclusions imply that the Chinese Government should put more emphasis on improving migrant workers' well-being, including offering educational programmes on nutrition and health, and enhancing medical insurance and the old-age insurance system.

 

Non-Traditional Security Challenges, Regional Governance, and the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC)
http://www3.ntu.edu.sg/rsis/nts/HTML-Newsletter/Working-paper/images/ASI7.jpg RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Mely Caballero-Anthony, MacArthur Asia Security Initiative Policy Series Working Paper No. 7, September 2010

Much of the attention on institutional development within ASEAN has focused on the progress in establishing the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC). Since the idea was first conceived in 1993, much has changed in the regional political and security landscape in Southeast Asia. Among these are the slew of emerging NTS challenges confronting the region which compel a re-thinking of regional modalities in order to address these security threats. This paper argues that the APSC is as much a regional political project as it is a security goal. In unpacking the APSC as a regional political and security  initiative, the paper examines the importance of regional governance as a  framework that can be used to manage transnational problems, while remaining cognisant  of the need to embed the dynamics of regional governance within the context of  domestic politics.

 

Water Regime Resilience and Community Rights to Resource Access in the Face of Climate Change
http://www3.ntu.edu.sg/rsis/nts/HTML-Newsletter/Working-paper/images/ASI6.jpg RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Keokam Kraisoraphong, MacArthur Asia Security Initiative Policy Series Working Paper No. 6, September 2010

This paper begins by arguing that an analysis of social vulnerability seeking to enhance social resilience must take into account the social construction of vulnerability, namely, the economic, institutional and political factors which promote or constrain options for adaptation. Drawing on a case study of water security in the Lower Mekong Basin, this paper further argues that in the area of water governance, a critical hydropolitics approach would indicate that what some perceive as creativity and adaptation in the activities of the water regime may be argued to demonstrate constraints imposed by the dominance of law, engineering and economics. This informs a central concern of the paper, that of the relationship between the apparent resilience of institutions and the resilience of individuals and communities. In response to this concern, this paper explores people-centred approaches to resilience that focus on community rights and access to resources.

 

Misdirected Development A Threat to Security – Analysis of Southeast Asia
RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Manpavan Kaur and Lina Gong, NTS Insight, September 2010

Under-performance on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and enduring conflicts are connected such that the former can catalyse or prolong the latter. This Insight looks at Southeast Asia, where intrastate conflicts and violence have plagued countries for years. Three socially vulnerable groups are identified to experience inequality in access to outcomes of projects on the MDGs; women and youth in rural areas and IDPs. The propensity for such inequality to incite and prolong conflict is examined.

 

Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR): Reducing Human Vulnerabilities to Natural Disasters
RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Mely Caballero-Anthony and Irene A. Kuntjoro, NTS Alert Issue No. 1, August 2010

This issue of the NTS Alert offers an overview of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) as a means of improving long-term preparedness against the projected increase in the frequency and intensity of natural hazards. It aims to provide a better understanding of DRR in relation to the holistic frameworks of disaster management, sustainable development and climate change adaptation.

 

The Implementation of a Disaster Management Agreement in ASEAN: Towards Regional Preparedness?
RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Mely Caballero-Anthony and Irene A. Kuntjoro, NTS Alert Issue No. 2, August 2010

This NTS Alert offers an overview of the initiatives taken by ASEAN to operationalise the ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response (AADMER); the first and only legally binding agreement on regional disaster management. It presents the decisions and activities that have taken place as well as efforts to complement and synergise existing disaster management policies within other regional fora where ASEAN interacts with its dialogue partners.

 

Rising Food Prices and Food Security: Impact of the 2008 Food Crisis on Asia
RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Arpita Mathur, NTS Insight, August 2010

The trend of rising food prices has made this basic human need inaccessible to an increasing number of people. The impact on vulnerable groups, especially the poor, is immense. Food price rise has implications for individuals, households as well as the state as a whole. This Insight delves into the drivers behind the 2008 food crisis and the impact on Asia.

 

Investing in Papua: The Dual Challenges of Governance and Development
RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Alistair D. B. Cook, NTS Perspectives Issue 2, August 2010

Recent events surrounding the Special Autonomy status of Papua in Indonesia have caught the eye of the international media and engaged public opinion. In particular, the protests in Jayapura in early July 2010 illustrated community tensions in Papua. This paper attempts to carve through the economic and political issues surrounding these events to analyse and evaluate the economic and political challenges in Papua, and thus provide an assessment on the prospects for conflict resolution.

 

Arsenic Poisoning in Bangladesh: Is It a Security Issue?
Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS)
Ishtiaque Alam, BIPSS Focus, August 2010

Arsenic poisoning has become a critical health security issue for Bangladesh. The people of Bangladesh suffer from arsenic poisoning firstly by drinking water contaminated with arsenic, and secondly by consuming agricultural crops contaminated with arsenic as the chemical enters the food cycle. Renowned medical journal, The Lancet, has revealed in research conducted in 2010 that up to 77 million people in Bangladesh have been exposed to toxic levels of arsenic in drinking water. This paper looks at the issue from a national security perspective and assesses its implications for Bangladesh.

 

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia and the Responsibility to Protect
Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (APR2P)
Responsibility to Protect in Southeast Asia Programme Working Paper No. 1, 25 August 2010

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) is a hybrid trial currently underway in Cambodia to try surviving senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge for their crimes from 1975 to 1979. This report looks at the positive impacts that the ECCC can have, as well as the problems that are currently holding it back in order to assess the potential impacts the trials may have for implementing RtoP in Cambodia.

 

Workshop on Responsibility to Protect Constituency Building in Cambodia
Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (APR2P), Workshop Report, 17 August 2010

APR2P in collaboration with the Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace held a workshop from 16 to 17 June 2010 at the Sunway Hotel, Phnom Penh with participants from the media, government, civil society organisations and academic institutions in Cambodia. It was the first workshop in a series of planned consultations to gather experts, practitioners and eminent members of the Cambodian policy and advocacy community to discuss the RtoP principle, its relevance to the Cambodian current and historical context, and avenues for building a local and regional constituency in support of RtoP in Cambodia and Southeast Asia respectively. This report summarises the proceedings of the workshop.

 

Demographic ‘Time Bomb’ or Demographic ‘Dividend’: Myths Surrounding Ageing Populations in Asia
RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies
Bill Durodié and Priyanka Bhalla, NTS Alert, July 2010

This Alert examines the validity of three common concerns associated with growing ageing populations. The first concern addresses predictions made about rising health care costs due to bigger numbers of older persons in society. The second concern addresses warnings about rising pension costs and the third concern addresses the claim of intergenerational solidarity decreasing in the Asian context, where the notion of filial piety is being called into question. Specifically, these concerns are explored within the Japanese, Singaporean and Thai context, with the aim of clarifying whether growing ageing populations in Asia are a demographic ‘time bomb’ or a demographic ‘dividend’.

 

Report on Regional Consultation on The Responsibility to Protect
http://www3.ntu.edu.sg/rsis/nts/HTML-Newsletter/Report/images/ReportRtoP.jpg RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies, Conference Report, April 2010

This report summarises the proceedings and main findings of the RtoP conference organised by the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies from 8 to 9 April 2010.

Attended by policymakers, civil society members, academics and the media from Asia, the conference provided an opportunity for discussion on what traction exists and how to operationalise RtoP in Asia. It was also a chance to collectively discuss how RtoP is viewed in the region, how it can be better promoted and whether there are any lessons to be learned from past experiences in the region.

 

Conference Report on ‘Strengthening Health and Non-Health Response Systems in Asia: A Sustained Approach for Responding to Infectious Disease Crises’
http://www3.ntu.edu.sg/rsis/nts/HTML-Newsletter/Report/images/ReportHC.jpg RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies, Conference Report, March 2010

This report summarises the proceedings of the health conference organised by the RSIS Centre for NTS Studies from 18 to 19 March 2010.

Attended by prominent experts and officials from across Asia and beyond, including high-ranking officials from the United Nations (UN) and the World Health Organization (WHO), the conference explored avenues for global linkages to achieve preparedness and to develop efficient response systems, as well as reflected on gaps and challenges with a view to building stronger health systems and global strategies for coping with infectious disease crises.

 

 

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Commentaries

Myanmar Elections 2010: Civilianising the Military Government?
Alistair D.B. Cook, RSIS Commentaries No. 119, 21 September 2010
Published as
Myanmar Elections 2010: Civilianising the Military Government? (Eurasia Review, 27 September 2010)

Pakistan’s Flood Disaster: An Unprecedented Humanitarian Crisis
Sania Nishtar, RSIS Commentaries No. 108, 6 September 2010

The Benefits of an Aging Population in Asia
Bill Durodié, Jakarta Globe, 31 August 2010

Arsenic Poisoning of Water in Bangladesh
Arpita Mathur, RSIS Commentaries No. 102, 30 August 2010

Indonesia’s National Defence Forces: Recent Strategic Changes and Implications
Evan A. Laksmana, RSIS Commentaries No. 101, 26 August 2010
Published as
The TNI: Recent Strategic Changes and Implications (The Jakarta Post, 1 September 2010)

Renewable Energy in East Asia
Kevin Punzalan, The Business Times, 24 August 2010 (Adapted from ‘East Asian Energy Renaissance – Nuclear or Renewables?’, NTS Alert, March 2010)

Pakistan's Floods: How Not to be Caught Off Guard
Irene A. Kuntjoro, RSIS Commentaries No. 98, 23 August 2010
Published as
Pakistan’s Floods: How Not to be Caught Off Guard (The Jakarta Post Print Edition, 28 August 2010)
Pakistan's Floods: How Not to be Caught Off Guard (Eurasia Review, 26 August 2010)

Up in Smoke: Peatland Fires in Russia and Indonesia
Sofiah Jamil, RSIS Commentaries No. 95, 19 August 2010
Published as
Up in smoke: Fires in Russia and Indonesia (The Jakarta Post, 24 August 2010)
Up in Smoke: Fires in Russia and Indonesia (Asia News Network, 24 August 2010)
Up in Smoke: Peatland Fires in Russia and Indonesia (Eurasia Review, 24 August 2010),

Facing Food Shortages: Urban Food Security in an Age of Constraints
Pau Khan Khup Hangzo, RSIS Commentaries No. 92, 17 August 2010
Published as
Feeding Urban Masses: A Key World Challenge (The Straits Times, 22 August 2010)

PM Must Focus on Our Closest Neighbours
Dennis Altman, National Times, 7 July 2010

Hub of Turmoil Thrives in Asia
Gerhard Hoffstaedter, The Canberra Times, 1 July 2010

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About the Consortium of NTS-Asia

The Consortium of NTS-Asia is a network of research institutes and think tanks in the Asia-Pacific.

Its primary objectives are to advance the field of non-traditional security (NTS) studies in Asia, develop long-term and sustainable regional capacity for research and policy studies on a wide range of NTS issues, and develop further the process of networking among scholars and analysts working on NTS issues in the region.

Website: www.rsis-ntsasia.org; Email: NTS_Centre@ntu.edu.sg


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