Articles

Kai Pfaffenbach, Reuters

Digital Cooperation – An Opportunity to Advance Sustainable Development

In today’s complex digital world, we see enormous advantages of digital technologies, which will play an increasingly important role in sustainable development in the coming years. Of course, we are also experiencing risks and challenges in the rapid development of these technologies. These challenges can no longer be met by individual organisations or countries. Instead, the answer to these challenges depends on cooperation between different groups, sectors, stakeholders, and countries.

Yannis Behrakis, Reuters

Digital Democracy in Action

How Greece Wants to Catch Up with Europe

The new government in Greece is not wasting time and has a clear plan to make up for the lost years of financial and economic turmoil. There is still a lot to do: in 2019, Greece ranked only 26th among the 28 EU member states on the European Commission Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI). Without digitalising, and slashing its bloated and overstaffed bureaucracy, the country will not achieve its aim of becoming an attractive destination for investment. The current efforts offer the chance to change the perception of Greece as the sick man of Europe.

Dado Ruvić, Reuters

E-Currency

Digital Money for the Digital State

Facebook wants to enter the financial sector in 2020 with Libra, its cryptocurrency. With its two billion users worldwide, the social media company could become a serious actor overnight, developing clout that is comparable to that of traditional central banks. Several concerns have recently been expressed around the world, although even governments are developing e-currencies of their own.

Thomas Peter, Reuters

Invented in China

High Technology in the Service of Illiberalism

30 years following the collapse of the Soviet Union, international politics is facing some fundamental questions once again. Whereas during the Cold War it was the socialist doctrine of the USSR, now it is China’s digitally empowered authoritarianism that poses a challenge to the West. In this conflict between two different systems, the focus is no longer solely on military capabilities, but also on key digital technologies and emerging industries. If the West is to prevail, it has to make an objective assessment of China’s capacity to innovate and find answers that take the factuality of globalisation in research, innovation and business into account.

Gleb Garanich, Reuters

The Second Generation of Climate Minilateralism

Building a New Mitigation Alliance

With multilateral progress on climate change lagging behind, a range of “minilateral” climate alliances have emerged over the past years. However, most of these climate clubs only had a limited impact in practice. In order to accelerate global climate action, there is a need for a second generation of climate minilateralism – a new Mitigation Alliance that provides exclusive benefits, comprises enthusiastic actors, and is closely aligned with the Paris Agreement.

Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah, Reuters

Who Holds Sovereignty Over the Internet?

Social Media and Democracy in Africa

In Africa, the continent with the greatest democratic deficits, the internet, and above all social media, offers new opportunities for civic participation, transparency and public access to information. Yet the initial euphoria about the emancipatory potential of social media is increasingly being tempered by scepticism. It is hard to ignore the internet’s dark side, such as the spread of hate speech and fake news. Meanwhile, Africa’s autocratic regimes are becoming more adept at instrumentalising social media to serve their own ends.

Vincent Kessler, Reuters

A Judgement Is Important – Enforcement Even More So!

A Comparison of Regional Human Rights Courts

International human rights protection has gained in importance over the last sixty years. The primary indicator of this development is the submission of states to the judgements of international human rights courts. However, the mere existence of these courts does not guarantee success. People can assert their rights only when judgements are properly and completely carried out. The following article illuminates the various mechanisms for implementing and enforcing judgements of the three existing international human rights courts.

Carlo Allegri, Reuters

Corrupt Judges – Threat to the Constitutional State

Judges are at the heart of a functioning constitutional state under the rule of law, but unfortunately this does not mean that they are immune to corruption. Recent years have seen a number of high-profile cases, demonstrating that corrupt judges are a global problem. In the fight against judicial corruption, it is essential to seek solutions at the national level, but it is still valuable to gain a global perspective of this phenomenon.

Hasmik Mkhchyan, Triada Studio

Editorial

From football to road construction – corruption has many faces. But the general rule is that the more opaque and unregulated decision-making processes are, the greater the risk of abusing power for self-enrichment.

Mohammad Ismail, Reuters

New Great Games

Regional Interests in the Afghan Peace Process

The first official peace talks between the US and the Taliban, held in 2019, and the possible withdrawal of US troops announced by President Trump could end what has been almost 20 years of ­NATO presence in Afghanistan. For regional countries – Pakistan, India, Iran, Russia, and China – the developments offer an incentive to restructure the regional peace and security order.

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Editor

Dr. Gerhard Wahlers

ISBN

0177-7521

Benjamin Gaul

Benjamin Gaul

Head of the Department International Reports and Communication

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Dr. Sören Soika

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Louisa Heuss

Louisa Heuss (2020)

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