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Past Events

LSE Africa Summit
Friday 31st March – Saturday 1st April 2017
‘Built for Africa: African solutions to African issues’
The fourth annual Africa Summit took place at LSE in April 2017.  The event acts as a platform to engage and explore cutting edge research and business trends across Africa’s rapidly changing socio-economic environment and is set to welcome heads of state, government officials, leading entrepreneurs and researchers from across Africa for two days of discussions and debates.

‘Seven Myths that sustain the global arms trade’
Monday 27th February 2017

JSRP hosted a panel discussion to launch:  ‘Indefensible: 7 myths that sustain the global arms trade‘ (Paul Holden et al, Zed Books). Issues contained in the book were discussed by a panel comprising Alex de Waal (JSRP and World Peace Foundation), Andrew Feinstein and Paul Holden (Corruption Watch UK), Nick Gilby (author and researcher), Sam Perlo-Freeman (World Peace Foundation), and Leah Wawro (Transparency International).

South Sudan: a political marketplace
January 9th – January 27th, 2017, LSE, London

JSRP hosted an exhibition of three infographic comics on South Sudan produced during the lifetime of the programme. The comics each present a different aspect of the political and economic situation in the country based on JSRP research findings.  Online versions of the comics can be accessed on the Research page of the JSRP blog.

December 12th 2016, University of Gent
Cartoon Exhibition and Panel Discussion on The Politics of Cartoons in Central Africa

cartoons-2A panel discussion chaired by Tatiana Carayannis and Koen Vlassenroot with “Kash” Kashauri Thembo Muhindo (leading Congolese illustrator and comic strip caricaturist based in Kinshasa), Barly Baruti
(Congolese comics writer and artist, co-founder of the Atelier de Création et de l’Initiation à l’Art in Kinshasa), Alain Brezault (Novelist, essayist and scenarist of comic strips) and Tjeerd Royaards (from JSRP parter The Cartoon Movement in Amsterdam)

December 12th 2016 – Egmont Palace, Brussels
‘Governing Justice and Security in Central Africa

JSRP presented research findings to policymakers in Brussels, drawing on five years of research.  The programme has documented how people constantly have to negotiate their access to justice and security with a diversity of institutions, including non-state actors such as militias, vigilantes and customary chiefs. The seminar brought together some of the leading specialists on these areas in order to present and discuss some of the main findings of the programme and what they imply for more effective international policies aimed at promoting justice and security in Central Africa. For more details please click here.

Wednesday 25th November 2015, LSE, London
‘The Real Politics of the Horn of Africa’
Alex de Waal launched his new book ‘The Real Politics of the Horn of Africa: Money, War and the Business of Power‘ with a discussion of the political marketplace. Drawing on his 30 years of experience in the war-torn region of north-east Africa, Prof de Waal explored how political leaders are operating a business model to secure funds and the effects of this on the institutions of state.

Wednesday 7th October 2015, LSE, London
‘Making Sense of the Central African Republic’
JSRP launched an important new book on the political and economic history of the Central African Republic with a reception and discussion with co-authors Tatiana Carayannis (SSRC), Louise Lombard (Yale), Enrica Picco (MSF) and Ned Dalby (Conciliation Resources). The book provides a much needed academic resource on a country at the heart of a troubled region.

Friday 17th – Saturday 18th April 2015, LSE, London
LSE Africa Summit 

The JSRP participated in the 2015 LSE Africa Summit that included an audience ranging from Heads of State to development practitioners, academics, policymakers, and students. The Summit aims to raise awareness and promote dialogue regarding innovative methods of tackling some of Africa’s most pressing issues. The focus of the first day was on Research and included a panel discussion on Security and Justice featuring Dr Anna Macdonald from the JSRP.

Wednesday 4th March 2015,
‘Why Corruption Threatens Global Security’
The East-West stand-off in Ukraine, a rebellion in Yemen, Boko Haram insurgents rampaging across northern Nigeria.  Does any thread tie these disparate events together? Sarah Chayes  discussed the role that corruption may be playing in fuelling current conflicts, in conversation with Lyse Doucet and Mary Kaldor.  The event marked the publication of Chayes’ new book ‘Thieves of State: why corruption threatens global security’.

Monday 10 November 2014, 19.15
: ‘Building the Rule of Law: in search of coherence or case-specificity?’

A panel discussion of the desired place and role of the Rule of Law in the post-2015 Development Agenda. Speakers include Deval Desai, Naina Patel, Mareike Schomerus, Sir Jeffrey Jowell and Michael Woolcock.  More.

Tuesday 1st July 2014: Can Politics and Evidence Work Together in International Development?
As part of an ongoing collaboration between the JSRP and The Asia Foundation, a broad range of policymakers, academics and practitioners debated the influence and impact of the current agendas on ‘working politically’ and ‘evidence-based policymaking’ in the international development discourse, with particular reference to justice and security programming.  Full programme details here.

Thursday 26th June 2014
‘The International Rule of Law Movement: a crisis of legitimacy and the way forward’
Chair: Iavor Rangelov, LSE
Speakers: Deval Desai (World Bank), David Marshall (Harvard Kennedy School), Mareike Schomerus (LSE)
To mark the publication of a new edited volume from the Harvard Law School Human Rights Program, three of the contributors discussed the ways in which rule of law is being promoted by the international community, particularly in post-conflict and fragile states.

Thursday 1st May 2014
‘Negotiating Borders: Defining South Sudan’
Chair: Mareike Schomerus, LSE
Speakers: Oystein Rolandsen, Edward Thomas, Christopher Vaughan, Lotje de Vries
The JSRP welcomed five of the authors of the recently published book ‘The Borderlands of South Sudan’ to debate a range of issues raised by South Sudan’s contested border negotiations and border management.     The authors took an anthropological and historically informed perspective to examine the realities of border governance, which in both past and present has been conducted through a range of authorities working in parallel or in competition.

Tuesday 17 September 2013
Delivering Food Assistance in a Shrinking Humanitarian Space
Venue: Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House
Speaker: Ertharin Cousin
Conflict and insecurity present a growing challenge to humanitarian agencies as they strive to reach those in need of food assistance. Access is vital if lives are going to be saved and children are to be given the nutritional support they need to thrive. In a world of increasingly complex emergencies, shifting allegiances and fluid frontlines, there is an even greater risk that some communities may be left beyond the reach of the agencies that are there to help. Ertharin Cousin is the executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme, the world’s largest humanitarian organisation. Last year, WFP provided food assistance to more than 97 million people in 80 countries. Ertharin is an exceptional advocate for improving the lives of hungry people worldwide, and travels extensively to raise awareness of food insecurity and chronic malnutrition.

Tuesday 20th August 2013,
Chatham House: South Sudan’s Reshuffle and Reassessment: Towards Democratization and Development?
James Copnall, BBC Correspondent for South Sudan and Sudan
Mareike Schomerus (JSRP)
Chair: Thomas Mawan Muortat, Political Commentator on South Sudan and Sudan

Informed by the speakers’ extensive experience in South Sudan, this event will assess the recent changes in the government and their implications for the path to elections in 2015. The speakers will discuss the dynamics that will shape the country’s immediate future and the government’s capacity to deliver on pressing internal developmental challenges such as security, the economy and building lasting institutions, as well as tackling corruption, the worsening humanitarian situation and intercommunal clashes.

Tuesday 2nd July 2013
Conference: ‘Evidence and Power in Development Policy’
The conference was structured as a conversation between researchers, practitioners and policymakers and engaged withcurrent debates around evidence-based policymaking  in international development.  The event was driven by an innovative  research collaboration between the JSRP and The Asia Foundation that is examining the use of ‘Theory of Change’ as a programme planning tool and as a potential entry point for better use of evidence in practice.  The conference provoked lively debate over the ways in which researchers, practitioners and policymakers might work together creatively to foster a stronger evidence base for future policy and programming.  Full conference programme.

Friday 28th June 2013:
Seminar: ‘Can foreign aid help to end some of the longest running conflicts in the world?’
A discussion of the new Asia Foundation report ‘The Contested Corners of Asia:subnational conflicts and international development assistance’ with Tom Parks, Regional Director for Conflict and Governance at The Asia Foundation, James Putzel from LSE and Dominik Zaum for DfID.  Download the report.

Monday 3rd June 2013:
Seminar: ‘Mind Over Measure:  New Ideas about the Role of Justice, Security, and the Rule of Law in the Post-2015 Development Agenda’
Todd Foglesong (Harvard Kennedy School) with Freddie Carver (DfID)
Behind all the advice and debate about the right definition and measure of ideas about justice, security and the rule of law in the UN agenda for post-2015 development goals are practical concerns about the repercussions of universal development goals and indicators.  Todd Foglesong examined what our own history of the measurement and management of public goods suggests about the utility of targets and indicators as agents of political change and how government officials, civic leaders, and ordinary residents in less affluent countries might manage the pressures to focus on some objectives and not others.

28th November 2012:
Seminar:  ‘Nepal: the politics of perpetual crises?’
George Varughese, country representative for Nepal with The Asia Foundation, discussed the current political situation in the country with Dr Mara Malagodi, British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in the Law Department and Prof Michael Hutt of SOAS.  Nepal has been in transitional crisis for five years and, for a decade prior to that underwent severe political instability and lethal violence.  Taken together, the actions of political actors over the past few years evidence a steady move towards the practice of a politics of perpetual crises.  The speakers debated the implications for the country’s progress in a lively discussion with the audience.

7th November 2012:
Alistair Berkley Memorial Lecture: ‘Experiencing Justice in Fragile and Conflict-affected Contexts’
Prof Mary Kaldor (Civil Society and Human Security Unit) Barney Afako (Human Rights Lawher) Deborah Isser (World Bank Justice for the Poor) and Roger Duthie (International Centre for Transitional Justice) discussed the politics of practice in security and justice programming. The discussion was the closing event of a two-day expert meeting organised by ODI.

Friday 18th May 2012:
Discussion: ‘Watching Kony2012 from South Sudan and DRCongo: social media and conflict transformation’
A panel discussion hosted by JSRP Director Mareike Schomerus and jointly organised by the JSRP and Conciliation Resources.  The event brought together community leaders from the affected areas, as well as policy and social media analysts, in order to explore the wider implications of the Kony 2012 viral campaign.

6th March 2013:
Seminar:  ‘The Juba Peace Talks and implications for peacemaking’

JSRP Consortium Director, Mareike Schomerus, gave a seminar on the Juba Peace Talks as part of the Africa Seminar Series run by the International Development department.

7th March 2013:
Lecture: ‘The Catalysing Effects of International Justice in Uganda and Sudan:Unravelling the Paradoxes of Complementarity’

Sarah Nouwen,  Lecturer in Law at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law and Pembroke College, discussed her forthcoming book Complementarity in the Line of Fire: The Catalysing Effect of the International Criminal Court in Uganda and Sudan with Chandra L. Sriram of SOAS and Iavor Rangelov of LSE.


Washington, USA

May 1-2 2013: Washington, DC

World Bank Fragility Forum: Stop Conflict, Reduce Fragility, End Poverty
Wednesday, May 1st and Thursday May 2nd, 2013
World Bank Headquarters (or Livestream)

The World Bank Group will host a two-day Fragility Forum, “Stop Conflict, Reduce Fragility, End Poverty,” at its headquarters in Washington, DC on May 1 and 2, 2013. The Forum aims to bring together the community of practitioners working on fragility and conflict to exchange insights, share ideas and strengthen the science of delivery in fragile and conflict-affected situations.

You can participate in the high level plenary opening session from 9-11am EST on May 1st in person or remotely via webstream or the World Bank Live . To attend the opening session in Washington, DC, please contact Nancy Kebe at nkebe [at] worldbank [dot] org. Kindly note that there will be limited seating (first-come, first-serve basis).

Linking Displacement and Transitional Justice
Tuesday, March 12th, 12:30-2pm
World Bank Headquarters (or Livestream)

From 2010-2012, the Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement and the International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) collaborated on a groundbreaking research project on the relationship between transitional justice and displacement. Involving researchers and practitioners from five continents spread among six working groups (criminal justice, gender justice, reparations, restitution, justice-sensitive security sector reform and truth-telling), this project explored the ways in which transitional justice processes can address forced migration, involve refugees and internally displaced persons, and support durable solutions to displacement—a critical development challenge in post-conflict states. Megan Bradley, a fellow in Foreign Policy at the Brookings Institute, will highlight the results of this research project and discuss their implications for post-conflict development issues including access to housing, land and property, sustainable livelihoods, and accountable governance. The background documents are available on theHive: 1) Transitional Justice and Displacement: Challenges and Recommendations; 2) Displacement, Transitional Justice and Reconciliation: Assumptions, Challenges and Lessons.

Linking Displacement and Transitional Justice
Thursday, March 14th, 12:30-2pm
World Bank Headquarters (or Livestream)

A combination of two factors—increased investment interest in natural resources, and widespread insecurity of local land rights—has led to exploitation, conflict, and shortsighted land use decisions. In this event, Vivek Maru, CEO of Namati, will describe three approaches for empowering communities in the protection of their rights over natural resources: documenting community land claims and strengthening local land governance in Liberia, Uganda, and Mozambique; renegotiating inequitable and fraudulent agreements with a large agribusiness project in Sierra Leone; and seeking enforcement of environmental law against a massive port complex in Kutch, India. He will suggest insights that emerge from these experiences for land and environmental policy, and for World Bank practice.

You can find various resources on conflict, natural resources and land and land property dispute in theHive’s ideaMap.

Ghent, Belgium

The University of Ghent’s Conflict Research Group is a partner in the JSRP consortium and is undertaking research for the programme primarily in DRCongo and the Central African Republic.

The ‘former East’ and the ‘global South’: the development aid policies of the Central and Eastern European EU countries
Monday 11 March 2013, 15:00-17:00:
Rode Zaal, Faculteit Rechtsgeleerdheid, Universititeitstraat 4 (second floor), University of Ghent, Belgium.

Presented by Simon Lightfoot (Department of European Politics, University of Leeds).

Archives and the field: Use of and access to archives
Thursday 14 March 2013, 12:00
Gillian Mathys (UGent)

In recent years, recognition of the use of history for anthropologists and other social scientists has come to the fore. Increasingly, both anthropologists and other social scientists (such as political ethnographers) have realized that it is not only about studying cultural or social categories, or political structures within a certain “place and time”, but also studying the process of how these categories or structures came into being, dissolved and evolved over time. In order to do so, a “classic” approach of ethnographic fieldwork (participant observations, interviews etc.) is ideally completed with an excursion to the archives, as they can shed light on the construction of certain categories or structures in the past.
During the seminar we will take a closer look at the usefulness of different archives for non-historians, and how they could/should be read and understood. Secondly, we will focus on the similarities between undertaking ethnographic research and archival research (in the field). As is the case with ethnographic fieldwork, in order to do archival research, issues of ‘permission’, ‘access’ and establishing ‘trust’ also play a role. Building on my own experiences of both archival and other fieldwork in and on Rwanda and the eastern Congo, we will on the one hand discuss why and how archives can be interesting for non-historians and on the other hand address some of the problems which sometimes arise with regards to access to archives and discuss possible strategies to deal with these issues.

Gillian Mathys is a research fellow at the History department of the Ghent University

The Conflict Research Group runs regular events during the year and full details can be found on the CRG website.

Forthcoming events hosted by the Social Science Research Council:
The JSRP is working in partnership with the Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum at the SSRC,  with a particular focus on DRCongo, South Sudan and Central African Republic. Details of events organised by the CPPF, both in New York and elsewhere, can be found on their website.




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