UVC Director Tatiana Carayannis and Program Manager Aaron Pangburn attended an NGO briefing with U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Nikki Haley after her October 2017 trip to Ethiopia, South Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. After some brief introductory remarks from the Ambassador, participants engaged in a Q/A session about U.S. and UN policy moving forward in these three critical Africa states.”.
Tune in at noon to watch a live demo of DATA2GO.NYC at the US Census Bureau's Opportunity Project. Measure of America will join other organizations using data to expand opportunity at the US Census Bureau's Opportunity Project. MOA's Laura Laderman will demo DATA2GO.NYC and discuss how the tool can help with outreach for Census 2020. Click here to watch live at noon!.
The Southern California Grantmakers will host an event to launch Measure of America’s latest well-being report, A Portrait of Los Angeles County. This event is open to the public, click link for more info! We are excited to announce the launch of the Portrait of Los Angeles County! Please join us for an optional pre-launch lunch starting at 12:45 followed by a presentation of key findings from the Portrait of Los Angeles County. Hear perspectives from different sectors about how we can use these findings to improve well-being throughout LA County. The Portrait of Los Angeles County examines well-being using the human development framework and index. In addition to exploring life expectancy and health data, the Portrait looks at data focused on access to knowledge (school enrollment rates and educational degree attainment rates) as well as measures related to standards of living and median earnings for full and part-time workers. The report will present Human Development Index scores for LA County places and demographic groups and explore a range of critical issues, including education, living standards, environmental justice, homelessness, inequality, and access to opportunity.
On 27 November 2017, UVC Program Director, Tatiana Carayannis moderated a briefing/panel discussion at the United Nations (UN) Secretariat, which took stock of the main policy issues raised at the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) in an effort to raise awareness of the importance of a regional integrated peace and security approach in the Great Lakes region. The meeting also aimed at raising awareness for international engagement, by promoting new programmatic and funding opportunities in support for the Cross-Border Multi-Partner Trust Fund, building on the initial investment funding provided by the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF). Ambassador Said Djinnit, Special Envoy of the Secretary General for the Great Lakes Region, introduced the Great Lakes Regional Framework and its six pillars before highlighting the connections between the work of his office and the ICGLR. The panel discussion brought together experts representing UN Member States, from international organizations, from civil society organizations, and from within the UN system. Highlights included insight from Ambassador Liberata Mulamula, a Visiting Scholar and the Acting Director of the Institute for African Studies at The George Washington University), who spoke to opportunities for promoting a strong women and peacebuilding agenda in the region and provided reflection on the ICGLR initiative 10 years on, after having served as the ICGLR’s first Executive Secretary from 2006-2011.
On 18 November 2017, at the annual conference of the African Studies Association, UVC Director Tatiana Carayannis and Program Manager Aaron Pangburn participated in a panel entitled “Resistance Strategies in Central Africa”. The panel brought together a group of scholars to analyze actions and discourses that contest, transgress, subvert or resist to international policy prescriptions and/or national public policies in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Rwanda. Koen Vlassenroot, Professor of Political Science and Director of the Conflict Research Group at the University of Ghent, presented his reflections on resistance by armed groups in Eastern DRC, and explored whether Herbert Weiss’ theory of rural radicalism  (developed after the Congolese rebellions of the 1960) could help explain the character and grievances of contemporary rebels. An Ansoms, Professor of Development Studies at the Catholic University of Louvain, looked at resistance to land policy and social reengineering in Rwanda, and the dichotomy between hidden and open forms of resistance by the Rwandan farming community. Her presentation focused on the green revolution in Rwanda, and how farmers are expressing discontent and pushing for reform in a variety of innovative ways. Carayannis served as the panel’s discussant, while Pangburn chaired the proceedings.  Herbert Weiss, Political Protest in the Congo: The Parti Solidaire Africain during the Independence Struggle (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1967).
Renowned scholar, author and political theorist Danielle Allen concluded her activities as the 2017 Democracy Fellow of the SSRC’s Anxieties of Democracy program last week with a public lecture in New York City. Professor Allen presented a powerful, provocative lecture on political equality to a capacity audience at the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College Nov. 16, followed by a response from NYU Law professor Jeremy Waldron. Following the formal program Professor Allen signed copies of her recent books Cuz: The Life and Times of Michael A and Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality. Professor Waldron also signed copies of his book One Another’s Equals: The Basis of Human Equality. As the 2017 Democracy Fellow, Professor Allen also conducted three graduate seminars for New York-area students and junior faculty from University Fund institutions. Professor Allen is among the most respected political theorists today, and serves as the James Bryant Conant Professor at Harvard, as well as director of the university’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics. Much of her work and writings have been focused on issues surrounding democracy, race and inequality in all its forms – educational, economic, political, and judicial.
This is the 3rd event in the inaugural year of the Abe Fellows Global Forum - Japan and the Leadership of the World Trading System Broad structural changes over the last quarter century are reverberating through the global economy and the institutions that regulate it. Recent US policy has shifted away from a leadership position in both long-standing institutions such as the WTO and newer trade agreements such as TPP-11 and RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership). These shifts are creating room for stronger regional ties and raise the question of which nation(s) will lead trade initiatives in Asia? Additionally, a shift toward populism across the world threatens to lead countries towards greater economic protectionism. Our speakers will focus on questions related to these issues as they relate to Japan, the US-Japan relationship, and East Asia.
On November 9th Mary Kaldor, Professor of Global Governance and Director of the Conflict and Civil Society Research Unit at the London School of Economics (LSE), gave a book talk on her recently released book, International Law and New Wars at the Security Council Report in New York City. International Law and New Wars examines how international law fails to address the contemporary existence of what are known as “new wars” - instances of armed conflict and violence in places such as Syria, Ukraine, Libya, Mali, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and South Sudan. Tatiana Carayannis, Director of the Understanding Violent Conflict Initiative, moderated and provided Introductory remarks.
United Nations Secretariat On 3 November 2017, the Understanding Violent Conflict Initiative (UVC) partnered with the Permanent Mission of Belgium to the United Nations to facilitate a high-level Expert Brainstorming on "Diamonds in the Central African Republic for Sustainable Development and Peace." The meeting was co-hosted by the Kingdoms of Belgium and Morocco and by the Government of CAR. Participants included representatives from civil society, the United Nations Secretariat, and 21 Permanent Country Missions to the UN. They discussed key challenges and opportunities for building the CAR’s capacity to counter the illicit exploitation of natural resources and the role MINUSCA and other partners can play to establish the conditions necessary for the successful implementation of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme in CAR. Ambassadors and Permanent Representatives Marc Pecsteen de Buytswerve of Belgium; Ambroisine Kpongo of the Central African Republic, and Omar Hilale of Morocco provided introductory remarks on the draft national strategy to address these issues, while a group of experts comprised of Marc Van Bockstael (Antwerp World Diamond Centre), Ruben De Koning (The Sentry), Marie Lintzer, (Natural Resource Governance Institute) and Damian Lluna (European Commission) provided their expertise on armed groups operating in the CAR and the role of the sanctions regime. This meeting will support the implementation of the Plan for the Recovery and Peacebuilding in CAR and the work of the African Ministers of Mining at the upcoming African Diamond Conference in Brussels on 13-15 November. UVC Director, Tatiana Carayannis, moderated the discussions.
CPPF consultant Richard Horsey produced a paper analyzing the current dynamics in Myanmar's Rakhine State in light of the Rohingya crisis, and includes specific recommendations for UN action.
On 30 October 2017, UVC Director Tatiana Carayannis participated in the Africa Center for Strategic Studies’ (ACSS) Emerging Security Sector Leaders Seminar as a panelist during a session entitled, Conflict Focus: Civil War Resolution: South Sudan and CAR. She was invited to share her expertise and insight on the conflict in CAR, the status of UN’s efforts in the region and some major challenges to peacebuilding. The panel is part of ACSS’ inaugural Emerging Security Sector Leaders Seminar, from 23 October to 9 November in Washington, D.C. The seminar aims to provide the next generation of African security sector leaders with practical and effective tools upon which they can draw to contribute to their nations’ security and development. Around 60 mid-level security professionals from over 30 African countries are participating in the seminar.
On 26 October 2017, the Central African Policy Forum (CAPF) hosted a discussion with Kris Berwouts on the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, with the support of the Permanent Mission of Belgium to the UN. Kris Berwouts, Independent Analyst on DRC and Author of Congo’s Violent Peace, presented his assessment of the political climate in the DRC. Participants, including representatives of civil society, the United Nations Secretariat and Permanent Country Missions to the UN, then expressed their views and offered questions and comments. UVC Director and CAPF Steering Committee member, Tatiana Carayannis, moderated the discussion.
On 17-18 October 2017, UVC Director Tatiana Carayannis and Program Manager Aaron Pangburn participated in a series of workshops for the Politics of Return research consortium and the Centre for Public Authority and International Development at the London School of Economics (LSE). The UVC has received two grants to participate in these research projects, and Tatiana and Aaron presented their recent progress and planned research agenda to a number of scholars and practitioners involved in the work. Director Carayannis, as co-investigator, will help provide strategic direction for both projects and lead on the research in western Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic.
Measure of America co-director Sarah Burd-Sharps will participate in the Health, Wealth, and Housing: Promoting Cross-Sector Collaborations for Equity Conference hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Sarah will discuss the latest research and evidence-based strategies that move the needle on improving the quality of life for low-income families with other expert panelists.
Measure of America's Kristen Lewis will present a sneak peek of our upcoming Portrait of Los Angeles County report at the Southern California Grantmakers annual conference.
On 26 September 2017, UVC Director Tatiana Carayannis hosted a workshop on ‘citizenship and civicness’ at the University of Kinshasa (UNIKIN). This workshop included members of the Congolese academic community especially faculty and researchers from the Centre d’Etudes Politiques based at UNIKIN.
Measure of America's Partnerships Specialist Vikki Lassiter will be a speaker at MANY's Connection 2017 event, which brings together actors working to improve outcomes for youth from various sectors.
On 12 September 2017, UVC director Tatiana Carayannis participated in the first red team exercise on UN peacekeeping, convened by the Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General. She was invited to provide feedback on the UN Secretary General’s draft strategic review report on the UN’s Peacekeeping Mission in the Congo (MONUSCO).