Political Science - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Will the colours fade? The successes and failures after the orange revolution in Ukraine

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No, item is not peer reviewed.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

Thesis explores the aftermath of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine. The author identifies the most insightful approaches in understanding revolutions today. Structural theories of revolutions and conventional transitology share a negative evaluation of the nature of the Orange Revolution concluding that it is not a revolution. Agency-centered theories of revolutions and the critical school of transitology evaluate the same event positively due to their emphasis on civil society. Analysis of the after-Orange tendencies demonstrates that the negative trends (political instability and power struggles) do not threaten the long-term democratic developments in Ukraine. The positive results of the Orange Revolution (civil society maturity and increased political participation) are fundamental for democratic governance. The author concludes that agency-centered theories are more insightful in studying the new generation of non-violent revolutions, whereas structural theories retain a conservative outlook on revolutions and neglect the positive changes that are the result of the Orange Revolution.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
L
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

The risk-laden approach to investing Canadians’ pensions: an analysis of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and its market-based investment strategy

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No, item is not peer reviewed.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

The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) has introduced substantial risk into the investment of Canadians’ public pensions by moving assets from secure government bonds to market-based equities, real estate and hedge funds. This risk, because of the recent economic recession, has resulted in substantial losses to the Board’s portfolio assets of over $17.5 billion in this current fiscal year alone. Under the guise of its internally developed “Policy on Responsible Investing,” the CPPIB invests the assets without concern for corporate social responsibility, promising to engage with rather than divest from irresponsible corporations. This adherence to a market-based investment philosophy has resulted in Canadians’ pension assets being risked and lost. The CPPIB therefore eschews its fiduciary responsibility to protect Canadians’ pensions for the foreseeable future. Failing the implementation of better risk management strategies including the reallocation of assets, new contributions may be required to fund future pension liabilities.

Document type: 
Thesis
Supervisor(s): 
M
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.A.)

A common humanity: regional organisations & humanitarian intervention

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

Humanitarian intervention is a contentious issue in international relations, but remains an important policy option. At the centre of recent debate is the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty and The Responsibility to Protect. The Responsibility to Protect attempted to balance state sovereignty with the responsibility of the international community to protect populations in danger. The recommendations contained plausible thresholds for which to trigger action, but the mechanism for using military force, the Security Council, was not realistic. Regional organisations, are much better suited to conducting the complex military operations involved in humanitarian intervention missions. In examining past cases of humanitarian intervention missions by the United Nations and regional organisations in both Europe and Africa, and conducting a comparative case study analysis, it is evident that regional blocs have a higher probability of success in ending hostilities and stopping egregious violations of human rights compared to the United Nations.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
J
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.A.)

Adaptation or innovation? The effectiveness of global environmental regimes

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

The growing importance of the discourse on climate change raises some interesting questions regarding the creation and evaluation of international regimes. When is a regime effective? Through analyzing two competing approaches to evaluating regimes, the instrumentalists and critical theorists, this project shows the deficiencies in the current discourse. Instrumentalists focus on observable means-ends standards of efficiency, while critical theorists ask fundamental questions regarding intersubjectivity. Influenced by both of these schools of thought, this project develops an analytical framework for evaluating regimes that differentiates between different sources/levels of change (regulative, normative, and cognitive) and types of change (adaptation and innovation).When this framework is applied to the cases of the Ozone regime and the Climate Change regime, interesting counter-intuitive findings emerge that offer alternative evaluative criteria for considering the effectiveness of global environmental regimes.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
J
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.A.)

In search of balance: must Canadians choose between security & freedom?

Author: 
Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

The problem this work will examine is the democratic deficit that currently exists in Canada in relation to oversight of the national security program. It is argued that the bodies tasked with monitoring security and intelligence activities are incapable of acting as an effective check on state power due to persistent under-resourcing and the absence of authority to issue binding recommendations. This project will present a legislative based oversight model that has the capacity to mitigate the risk posed by counter-terrorism investigations. As confidence in the existing oversight framework has been severely eroded as a result of the mishandling of the investigation involving Maher Arar it is clear the time has come to establish an accountability regime capable of ensuring that agencies are conducting security operations in a manner in harmony with the rule of law and international human rights standards.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
S
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

The critical relationship between large resorts and the state in developing sustainable tourism in the Caribbean: the case of the Dominican Republic

Author: 
Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

Tourism is a growing industry. If tourism projects are sustainable, tourism can be used by developing economies as a source of economic development. However, this is not an easy goal to achieve. This project reviews, through primary and secondary sources and field research, the important relationship between large resorts and the state that affects the outcome of tourism development in the Dominican Republic. It begins by outlining the problem of unsustainable tourism and then moves on to discuss sustainable tourism. It then places the Dominican Republic into the discussion and identifies the actors involved in the development of tourism. It examines how the relationship between those actors affects sustainable tourism development in regards to the environment, the tourism sector and the community. It argues that there is little consistency in the government civil service, and problems within the relationship cannot be rectified until the government itself becomes sustainable.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
A
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.A.)

Challenges to the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between the Sudan People Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) and the government of Sudan: implications for human security and human rights in Sudan

Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

The primary objective of this project is to identify the factors that may facilitate or impede the successful implementation of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between Khartoum and the Sudan People Liberation Army/Movement (SPLA/M). The focus is on the problems in the implementation of the Abeyei provisions of the CPA. The project also examines the linkages between the Darfur conflict and the Southern Sudan conflict to illustrate the connections between what is transpiring in these regions. Generally, this research project aims to identify the main challenges to human security and human rights in the country following the 2005 peace agreement. The project argues that a faithful power-sharing is important for eliminating the political inequality between the Southern and Northern Sudan and other parts of the country like Darfur. Power-sharing can help promote unity between the national government in Khartoum and the regional government in the South.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
J
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.A.)

Transitional justice failing? A gendered evaluation of the transitional justice program in post-genocide Rwanda

Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

This thesis explores the experiences of women in the transitional justice process that has followed the war in Rwanda. Transitional justice is implemented to satisfy the state’s need to regain legitimacy in the eyes of its citizens by entrenching the rule of law and building capacity in justice institutions. In Rwanda, women have experienced lasting effects from the trauma of the genocide, and in order to heal, they have sought to participate in the country’s transitional justice program. Through a gender analysis of the conflict and subsequent transitional justice program, it is evident that the government of Rwanda is not adequately addressing gender-based violence crimes and gender specific sensitivities with regard to the retributive justice process. Drawing upon the lessons learned from a gender analysis of the Rwandan conflict and a gender evaluation of Rwanda’s transitional justice program, recommendations are made regarding a more gender sensitive framework for justice.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
S
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Losses and gains: women's empowerment in armed conflict and the aftermath

Author: 
Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

Despite international recognition of the roles that women assume during conflict and the specific needs and contributions women make both in perpetuating conflict and ending it, women frequently remain invisible to local, national and international actors working to rebuild the state in the post-conflict period. The contributions of women to conflict as combatants and in other support roles and their contributions “at home” during conflict in sustaining communities, economies and individuals is often unrecognized in demobilisation, demilitarisation and reintegration (DDR) and other reconstruction processes. According to some scholars and development practitioners, women’s involvement in formal peace processes helps to overcome this; however, simply adding women to such processes is not enough to ensure their empowerment. This thesis examines the utility of women’s organizations and networks as a tool to combat women’s marginalisation in the aftermath of conflict and to consolidate the limited gains some women make in times of conflict.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
S
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Conflicting aims: sustainable development and intellectual property rights in Canadian foreign policy

Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

Controversy over intellectual property (IP) is not a new issue; however, IP protection is receiving greater attention as this protection covers a more diverse subject matter and affords stronger protection toIP than ever before. IP protection is an important variable in the development prospects for many countries as the extent of IP has implications on environmental, economic and social well-being. Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT) maintains a commitment to protecting IP internationally through multiple and bilateral trade and investment agreements. At the same time, DFAIT puts forward a sustainable development agenda that pledges the department to incorporating concerns over the economic, environmental and social well-being of developing countries through multilateral agreements. In this paper, I argue that DFAIT’s commitment to IP protection undermines its sustainable development policy. This project will investigate the issue in more detail and examine the reasons for this disconnect in Canadian foreign policy.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
S
Department: 
Dept. of Political Science - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.A.)