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Weekly Security Readings

5 Sep 2019

This Policy Brief discusses the economic costs and risks associated with episodes of political instability, an important subset of geopolitical risk. It argues that firms, government agencies, and international institutions must update their forecasting and risk assessment efforts to take global factors into account, appreciating the impact of economic contractions in major economies on smaller emerging-market economies.


29 Aug 2019

The global energy economy is undergoing a rapid transition from ‘hydrocarbon molecules to electrons’: in other words, from fossil fuels to renewables and low-carbon electricity. The geopolitics of oil over the past 120 years have played a central role in international relations. Indeed some would argue that geopolitical rivalry over access to, and control of, oil supplies has been the source of much of the conflict witnessed in the 20th century. Past experience and an abundance of analysis of earlier energy transitions suggest a number of questions, all of which need to be addressed if we are to understand what is going on in the energy economy now, and what the future implications of this transition might be. This research paper tries to summarize some of the key issues arising from these questions, to explore in particular how they link together, and to generate debate.


22 Aug 2019

Russia is widely regarded as one of the major revisionist powers in the world, determined to upend the global liberal order. To be a global power, Russia must become a maritime power as well. Thus, it seeks to gain control in Eurasia and the region between the Black Sea and the Baltic region. The North European Plain and the river Danube hold strategic significance for Russia, the former being a gateway to Europe and the latter the economic lynchpin of 10 important countries. However, the presence of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in the Black Sea and the Baltic states is an impediment to Russia’s plans. This paper analyses Russia’s geopolitical situation and its longstanding conflict with the Western powers.


14 Aug 2019

In order to achieve sustainable development outcomes in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), African institutions must be the leading experts on and primary providers of research solutions to local problems. We present for consideration three possible innovative models that can facilitate the emergence of strong Africa-based, Africa-led institutions: a multi-stakeholder funding platform, an integrator organization model, and a scale model.




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