International Studies - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Hot soil: resource scarcity, human security and armed conflict in Karamoja, Uganda

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

Does climate change contribute to armed conflict? The causal relationship between environmental resource scarcity and the outbreak of violent conflict is complex. By analysing the link between resource scarcity and violent conflict in Karamoja (Uganda), we seek to provide a multi-focal perspective on the ongoing crisis in the region. This research argues that increased vulnerability of pastoral livelihoods to risk factors and triggers is a function of the cumulative effect of poor governance, population pressure, erratic rainfall, economic marginalization and a breakdown of traditional authority. The resulting environmental degradation is a risk factor that has increased human insecurity in Karamoja. The proliferation of small arms from neighbouring countries is an additional trigger. The interaction between contextual risk factors and triggers, which is missing from many quantitative studies that deal exclusively with structural/contextual factors, is essential to understanding armed conflicts.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
A
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Supporting international assignments for intercultural effectiveness: a course redesign

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

Increased global mobility has resulted in a proliferation of international work, study abroad and volunteer opportunities. Yet these types of opportunities canbe challenging, and the support people receive can greatly influence their ability to navigate effectively across cultures. This project examines the concept of intercultural effectiveness for the purpose of redesigning a course on supporting international assignments offered by the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Intercultural Communication. With a stronger link to research across sectors and with a focus on intercultural effectiveness, the redesigned course promotes a comprehensive integrated approach to supporting individuals and groups throughout the international assignment cycle. Conceptual frameworks and models are introduced to assist course participants in analyzing contextual, organizational as well as individual factors contributing to success and intercultural effectiveness in international assignments, and in planning and developing competency-based support programming.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
K
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

The role of dollar diplomacy in China-Taiwan diplomatic competition in the Caribbean and Central America

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

China and Taiwan have a significant impact on the nations of the Caribbean and Central America. This study shows that both governments have used dollar diplomacy to rent recognition from economically fragile nations in the region, thus treating sovereignty as a resource to be fought over in their competition for diplomatic ties. To develop this argument, the paper analyzes regional Sino-Taiwanese diplomatic rivalry by first clarifying what the term dollar diplomacy means, setting it in its historical and contemporary foreign policy contexts, and then analyzing motivations, techniques and results of dollar diplomacy in thirteen countries in the region. Dollar diplomacy is the most extreme and competitive form of the economic-based foreign policies of Beijing and Taipei. The paper concludes with an explanation for the current Taiwan-China diplomatic truce in 2009, but shows that pressures still exist for re-intensified rivalry and for dollar diplomacy to resume.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
N
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Mining for solutions, extracting discord: corporate social responsibility and canadian mining companies in Latin America

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

While the mining industry generates many benefits to society, the industry has in some cases had a detrimental impact on affected communities. This paradox, manifested in the unequal distribution of costs and benefits amongst stakeholders, has prompted widespread scrutiny of the mining industry. Critique of the industry has questioned whether mining provides an economically, environmentally and socially sustainable model of development. Mining companies are increasingly adopting Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to address the industry paradox, and to thereby ameliorate the industry’s reputation, productive prospects, and societal impact. This paper examines how, and to what effect CSR has been implemented by Canadian mining companies operating in Latin America. A case study of Glamis Gold/ Goldcorp’s operations in Guatemala illuminates industry and CSR trends, observable elsewhere in Latin America. Despite the redeeming qualities of many CSR initiatives, CSR alone is not the panacea for solving the industry paradox and achieving sustainable development.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
E
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Where credit's due: livelihoods, market failure and financial sector development for poverty reduction in rural Mozambique

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

Mozambique is widely cited as one of the few recent examples of rapid and sustained economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa. Noting that this growth has contributed to appreciable poverty reduction, this paper argues that Mozambique’s economic miracle has yet to generate economic opportunities commensurate with the livelihood needs of the rural population in particular. The paper begins with an analysis of the development of livelihood strategies amongst rural Mozambican households throughout the country’s modern history. The analysis then shifts focus to the country’s post conflict economy expansion and the emergence of non-agricultural crop production economic opportunities for rural Mozambicans. The lack of such opportunities is seen, in larger part, to result from a poor environment for entrepreneurial activity, limited most notably by the failure of the commercial financial sector to serve adequately the needs of rural Mozambicans. Finally, a number of financial sector institutional alternatives are explored.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
A
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

The functional use of religious identity for the production of ethnic riots: an analysis of sources

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

This paper inspects the relationship between Hindu communal discourse and Hindu-Muslim riots. It examines how conflict entrepreneurs employ religious discourse, utilize religious networks, and attack religious symbols in order to condition an ambivalent acceptance of anti-Muslim violence among non-elite Hindu communities. Localities exhibiting endemic outbursts of Hindu-Muslim riots are, most often, pre-planned productions meant to create and reinforce new stigmatisations of Muslims among the majority Hindu population. Designed to generate a collective Hindu anxiety, these riots offer the ability to impose the belief that Hindus are under siege by their Muslim neighbours. Thus, Hindu-Muslim riots are opportunities desired by conflict entrepreneurs to maintain their influence in particular localities. This paper also provides an analysis of the various propositions put forth to explain why communal violence occurs in order to clarify misnomers, which, effectually, have obscured the linkages between ethnic violence, identity construction, and Hindu communal discourse.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
A
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Factors that contributed to the economic success of Botswana

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

At independence in 1966, Botswana was one of the poorest countries in the world, dependent on foreign assistance and poor grade cattle for economic growth. However, following the discovery of diamonds in 1967 the country has radically changed. The purpose of this paper is to explain some of the reasons why beyond simply the discovery of diamonds, Botswana was economically successful following 1966. The first reason Botswana’s economy was successful is because of their specific history and location. The second factor to be explored is leadership, specifically the role that Seretse Khama played in encouraging the economic success of Botswana. Luck and institutions were also very important in Botswana’s economic success. As a resource rich economy, Botswana is at risk to contract the ‘Dutch disease’, but for the most part through prudent policy they have been able to achieve macro-economic stability.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
A
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Inequality and unconsolidated democracies in Latin America: the role of flawed judicial institutions

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

Latin American democracies are characterized by three traits – illiberalism, inequality, and weak judicial institutions – which are connected to each other through a complex system of mechanisms. Flawed judiciaries diminish both the capacity of the state to guarantee constitutional rights and the ability of democracy to empower marginalized citizens. These trends contribute to systemic bias and discrimination, the criminalization of the poor, and the private administration of justice. Reforming judicial institutions to increase the strength of the judicial branch and enhance horizontal accountability has the potential to dismantle structural inequality in Latin America and contribute to the deepening and consolidation of these democratic regimes.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
E
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Industrial relations in China: the evolving nature of labour law reform

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

The “Industrial Relations in China: the Evolving Nature of Labour Law Reform” project will permit a greater understanding of the governance of labour reform as China continues its rapid market integration. Indeed, it is now the case that in China, the concept of governance is increasingly diffusing among alternative stakeholders, such as international corporations. This project will demonstrate that labour reform is moving away from traditional state-centric frameworks, and toward the private sector delivery of labour reform compliance. By examining the concept of governance in China through the lens of labour reform, the emerging issues related to China’s integration into the world economy are clearer. This project outlines the strengths and weaknesses of both domestic and international labour reform frameworks, and allows the reader to understand the primary drivers of labour reform, especially in the labour-intensive export-oriented development zones of South China.

Document type: 
Thesis
Senior supervisor: 
S
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Project Jugamos "Let's Play": designing and implementing sport for development programs in impoverished rural regions

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

Play represents not only an enjoyable past time, but is also a way to foster peace and development. Through play, children learn valuable life lessons, such as the importance of cooperation, teamwork, and leadership. At the same time, participation in play has been shown to improve overall mental and physical health. While many international organizations are utilizing the benefits of sport and play, the tools to conduct sport for development programs have not been made readily available to communities most in need. This project details the actual experience of creating and establishing a sport for development program in the municipality of Copán, Honduras, in order to improve the overall health of the community. By working in collaboration with community members, and local organizations in Honduras, Jugamos “Let’s Play” established a program that currently provides over 450 children workshops in health, nutrition and hygiene, as well as the opportunity to play.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
K
Department: 
School for International Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)