News & Events

Call for Papers on Social Protection in Contexts of Fragility and Forced Displacement

This call for papers aims to assemble high quality papers that will increase our understanding of: 1) the role of social protection in fragile contexts and settings of forced displacement and migration; and 2) synergies across the humanitarian and development divide in both contexts. The aim is to assemble 8 to 10 papers of sufficient quality to be jointly submitted for a special issue to the Journal of Development Studies, or featured in an edited book. Reviewed and approved papers will also be featured in the UNICEF Office of Research–Innocenti working paper series.

Some submissions are expected to draw on evidence presented at an International Conference focusing on the same themes organized by UNICEF, the European Commission and partners to take place in July 2017 in Brussels, Belgium. It is expected that these papers and others coming from outside the conference will include quantitative and mixed methods work, focusing on diverse social protection research resulting in policy-relevant lessons for governments, humanitarian and development actors, and the larger donor and stakeholder communities.

Extended abstracts can be submitted to Guest Editors (proposed length of 1,000 words) by email: jdehoop@unicef.org by 15 July 2017. Please see the full call for papers.

Call for Applications: Summer School on Social Cohesion 2017

The Summer School on Social Cohesion: Concept, Implementation and Impact Evaluation is a capacity-building initiative for researchers, practitioners and policymakers in Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia. It is organised as part of the Social Cohesion through Community-based Development project implemented in Kyrgyzstan from 2014 to 2017. The project aims to identify, pilot and build capacity for social cohesion mechanisms in community-driven development approaches. The Summer School will be held from 11–18 June 2017 in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Researchers, primarily young professors, PhD students, development practitioners, and policy analysts from government, international agencies and civil society organisations based in Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan) are encouraged to apply. The application deadline is 5 April 2017. More details can be found here.

New Article: Do jobs aid peace? The impact of employment interventions on peace, security and stability

The article titled “Do jobs aid peace? The impact of employment interventions on peace, security and stability” by Tilman Brück, Neil T.N. Ferguson, Valeria Izzi and Wolfgang Stojetz has been published in the February/March 2017 issue of GREAT Insights on Youth employment in fragile countries. The magazine is published by the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM).

Call for Papers: 13th Annual HiCN Workshop “Development Aid in Conflict-Affected Countries”

We invite papers that can shed light on the effect of food aid on the beneficiaries as well as the warring parties, on demobilization, reintegration and employment programs, on the role of media during conflict, on forced displacement, on new ways to collect data during conflict and on the impact of prevention and peace programs, to name but a few.

Papers on the causes, functioning and consequences of violent conflict are also welcome, provided they have a strong empirical component, including newly collected data, new analyses of existing data, impact evaluations, experiments in the field, archival data.

Please send your papers to the email address of the workshop: brussels.nov2017@gmail.com no later than 15 May, 2017.

The Key Note speech will be given by Jeremy Weinstein, Professor of Political Science at Stanford University. The workshop will take place at the Université libre de Bruxelles, Brussels. It is co-organized by the HiCN co-directors Tilman Brück, Patricia Justino and Philip Verwimp. Please see the call or the HiCN website for further information (www.hicn.org).

MEEA Best Paper Award received by Sami H. Miaari

The paper “Should I Trade or Should I Go (to War)?: Lessons from the Second Intifada” by Sami H. Miaari has received the “Best Paper Award” by the Middle East Economic Association. The paper was selected from among all papers presented at MEEA conferences between January 2016 and January 2017.

Job announcement: Research Assistantat the University of Central Asia (UCA)

The Institute of Public Policy and Administration (IPPA) at the University of Central Asia (UCA) is looking for a full-time Research Assistant. IPPA was established in 2011 to strengthen public policy in Central Asia. It provides in-depth analysis on current and emerging policy issues facing the region, and improves the analytical capacity of governments and civil society to use evidence in decision-making processes through professional development. The Consultant/Research Assistant will assist with implementing research, training and dissemination activities of IPPA projects. To facilitate these activities, the consultant will be granted UCA corporate e-mail address as well as authorised to perform  related to IPPA projects functions (request contracts, make payments related to IPPA projects, etc. More information is available here.

Call for Papers: Tinbergen European Peace Science Conference

The 17th Jan Tinbergen European Peace Science Conference, annual meeting of NEPS, will be held on 26th-28th June 2017 at the University of Antwerp, Prinsstraat 13, Antwerpen, Belgium .

Those who are interested in participating should submit their proposal including abstract, title, author’s name(s), affiliation(s) to the following address: conference@europeanpeacescientists.org. For more information, please see the full Call for Papers.

Call for Papers: Planning a Special Issue Proposal on “Food Security and Conflict” for World Development

The Households in Conflict Network (HiCN), ISDC – International Security and Development Center and FAO are planning a proposal for a special issue on the topic of “food security and conflict” to be submitted to “World Development” in mid-January 2017. This builds on a workshop on the theme held at FAO in Rome in October 2016 (LINK). Some of the papers presented there and a few additional papers will be proposed to the editors of World Development for consideration as a special issue.

Thematically, the key focus of the planned special issue is the causal relationships between various indicators of food security on the one hand and various forms of violent conflict, insecurity and fragility on the other hand. We would like to expand our understanding of the interdependencies between these issues at the micro- and macro-levels, drawing on case studies or cross-country analyses.

Authors interested to have their paper considered for inclusion in this proposal, please send the following information by email to info@hicn.org by 9 January 2017:

  • a completed paper in pdf format;
  • a long abstract (750 words) including the paper’s title;
  • the authors’ names and affiliations; and
  • a short bio of each author (100 words each).

All submissions should be original, primary research, written in English and not be under review at any journal (or published at any journal or book).

We aim to inform you about the inclusion of your paper in the proposal by 15 January 2017.

Job Opening: Research Assistants in Applied Micro-Development

ISDC is a Berlin-based, non-for-profit research center conducting research, providing policy advice and building capacity on international security and socio-economic development. ISDC is unique in the global research scene for being dedicated to work exclusively on the security-development nexus. We are currently hiring Research Assistants in Applied Micro-Development to support on-going research work on a variety of  projects on the relationship between conflict and development.

The scale of the work load and the length of the assignment are negotiable. Full and part-time working options are available for the duration of six to 12 months. The work can be conducted remotely or from Berlin.

We are looking for final year doctoral students in economics with strong applied micro-economic and quantitative skills, with experience in Stata and Excel, and preferably with some interest in the economics of development, trade, migration and/or conflict. Experience with impact evaluations and/or panel data and a working knowledge of French, Arabic and/or Russian would be an advantage. Excellent written communication skills in English are required.

If you are interested, please send an email with your CV to Myroslava Purska (myroslava.purska (at) isd-center.org) as soon as possible. The position will be filled as soon as suitable candidates have been found. Please indicate if you would like your CV to be kept on file for future opportunities.

Invitation to Attend: Annual ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Conference 2016

Academic Organizers: Tilman Brück (IGZ/ISDC), Patricia Justino (IDS), Philip Verwimp (Université Libre de Bruxelles) and Marco d’Errico (FAO)Institute of Public Policy and Administration of the University of Central Asia (UCA), Leibniz Institute of Vegetable and Ornamental Crops (IGZ), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), International Security and Development Center (ISDC) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) are pleased to announce the second annual ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Conference to take place in Bishkek on 6-7October 2016.

The two-day conference will bring together national and international experts from government and the public sector, development agencies, non-governmental organizations, academia and research institutions, and media to exchange knowledge and experiences on recent socio-economic developments in Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia, and to promote evidence-based policy making.

There is no conference fee. Please note that travel and accommodation funds cannot be provided. Please confirm your participation by e-mail: likconference2016@gmail.com or shoola.dzhumaeva@ucentralasia.org or by phone: 910 822 (+572). Registration for participation in the conference will close on 3 October 2016. The programme can be found here.

For more information please visit the website of the ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Study.

New Publication on the Impact of Employment Programmes on Peace

Tilman Brück, Neil T. N. Ferguson, Valeria Izzi & Wolfgang Stojetz authored a report titled “Jobs Aid Peace: Review of the Theory and Practice of the Impact of Employment Programmes on Peace in Fragile and Conflict-affected Countries”. This report provides new understanding on employment programmes in fragile and conflict-affected states as ‘inputs’ and peacebuilding outcomes in these states as ‘outputs’, by presenting the first systematic accumulation of knowledge on this relationship.

The notion that employment can contribute to peace is the explicit backdrop to a large number of labour, training and entrepreneurship programmes and is an implicit one of many more, especially in fragile and conflict-affected states. At the same time, there is a lack of systematic presentation of knowledge on selection into pre-/violent behaviour; on the links between employment programmes and peace; and on which programme designs maximise impact. This research shows that the theoretical underpinnings of the relationship between employment programmes and peace are well-established but that several layers of empirical support are missing. Firstly, the quantitative support for the theories of change is often weak or absent; secondly, learning on the main relationship between employment and peacebuilding at the programme level is scant; and finally, there are no examples of deeper learning on which programme typologies maximise impact.

Full report can be downloaded here.

New Publication on Violent Conflict and Inequality

The article by Çağatay Bircan, Tilman Brück & Marc Vothknecht “Violent conflict and inequality” has been published in the Journal of Oxford Development Studies on Taylor & Francis Online. It is available here.The paper analyses the distributive impacts of internal violent conflicts, in contrast to previous literature which has focused on the effects of inequality on conflict.

Job Openings at ISDC

ISDC is currently hiring

  • Research Assistant in Macroeconomics
  • Research Assistant in Microeconomics

to support on-going research work on a variety of macro- and microeconomic research projects on the relationship between conflict and development.

The scale of the work load and the length of the assignment are negotiable. Full and part-time working options are available for the duration of one to 12 months. The work can be conducted remotely or from Berlin.

We are looking for doctoral students in economics with strong macro- and/or micro-economic and quantitative skills, with experience in Stata and Excel, and preferably with some interest in the economics of development, growth, migration and/or conflict. Excellent written communication skills in English are required.

If you are interested, please send an email with your cv to Myroslava Purska (myroslava.purska (at) isd-center.org)  as soon as possible. The position will be filled as soon as suitable candidates have been found.

New Publication: Peace and Conflict 2016

An authoritative source of information on violent conflicts and peacebuilding processes around the world, Peace and Conflict is an annual publication of the University of Maryland’s Center for International Development and Conflict Management and the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (Geneva). The publication includes an overview of recent advances in scholarly research on various aspects of conflict and peace, as well as chapters on armed conflict, violence against civilians, non-state armed actors, democracy and ethnic exclusion, terrorism, defense spending and arms production and procurement, peace agreements, state repression, foreign aid, and the results of the Peace & Conflict Instability Ledger. It features work by Tilman Brück, Patricia Justino, and Philip Verwimp on measuring micro-level welfare effects of exposure to conflict.

Deadline extended – Call for Papers: 12th Annual HiCN Workshop “Violent Conflict, Resilience and Agriculture: From Emergency to Development”

FAO and the Households in Conflict Network (HiCN) are organising a joint workshop on the impact of violent conflict on the welfare, resilience and behaviour of individuals, households and communities. The workshop will bring together scholars interested in these topics to present their cutting edge original research and to discuss these findings with leading experts from FAO and other interested stakeholders and with each other. The workshop will take place on 24-25 October 2016 in Rome immediately prior to the 7th International Conference on Agricultural Statistics (ICAS VII) in Rome, Italy, which is co-hosted by FAO. The conference will also feature a session on “Measuring the social and economic impact of conflicts and political instability on agriculture”. See http://icas2016.istat.it for further details.

We invite submission of original research papers, with a preference for empirical papers addressing questions of conflict and agriculture at the micro level. Papers making an explicit reference to the connection between agriculture and/or food security and conflict are particularly welcome. We are looking for completed but unpublished papers. Submissions by early stage researchers and from researchers based in the Global South are encouraged. High quality submissions on the economics of conflict outside of the workshop theme will also be considered. Please send your completed paper and a short CV (maximum two pages) in PDF format by email to resilience@fao.org by 28 August 2016. Please see the complete Call for Papers here.

Academic Organizers: Tilman Brück (IGZ/ISDC), Patricia Justino (IDS), Philip Verwimp (Université Libre de Bruxelles) and Marco d’Errico (FAO)

For further information, please visit www.hicn.org.

Deadline extended – Call for Papers: Annual ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Conference 2016

Academic Organizers: Tilman Brück (IGZ/ISDC), Patricia Justino (IDS), Philip Verwimp (Université Libre de Bruxelles) and Marco d’Errico (FAO)Institute of Public Policy and Administration of the University of Central Asia (UCA), Leibniz Institute of Vegetable and Ornamental Crops (IGZ), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), International Security and Development Center (ISDC) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) are pleased to announce the second annual ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Conference to take place in Bishkek on 6-7October 2016.

The two-day conference will bring together national and international experts from government and the public sector, development agencies, non-governmental organizations, academia and research institutions, and media to exchange knowledge and experiences on recent socio-economic developments in Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia, and to promote evidence-based policy making.

To contribute to the discussion, we invite the submission of proposals for entire sessions or for individual research papers studying various aspects of socio-economic development in Kyrgyzstan or Central Asia more generally, preferably at the micro-level. We welcome empirical papers using panel micro data, especially the “Life in Kyrgyzstan” survey data. However, we also want to encourage researchers to present macroeconomic studies with the relevant topics of research. We encourage PhD students and postdoctoral researchers to apply to participate at the conference and use this opportunity to receive feedback from senior researchers.

Those interested in submitting sessions or papers to the conference are welcome to submit their applications by end-August 2016 at (likconference2016@gmail.com)

For more information please visit the website of the ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Study.

Call for Participants: CESPIC Summer School “War, Reconstruction and Establishment of Peace

Scheduled on 19-23 September 2016, the Summer School “War, reconstruction and establishment of peace from the roots of war to the establishment of a lasting Peace” aims to provide a group of international graduate students with scientific pillars about roots of war, peace and issues in peacebuilding.

In line with Peace Science tradition, the interdisciplinary program involves disciplines such as economics, political science, international relations and history. The Summer school is designed for graduate students with a strong interest in the scientific study of Peace that are either willing to proceed to advanced graduate studies or to become future practitioners in the field of international relations and peacebuilding.

The faculty consists of Arzu Kibris, (Sabanci University), Vincenzo Bove, (University of Warwick), Scott Gates, (PRIO), Mansoob Murshed, (ISS and Birmingham University), Christos Kollias, (Thessaly University), Roberto Ricciuti, (University of Verona), Tobias Böhmelt, (University of Essex), Han Dorussen, (University of Essex).

Please, visit the website for more information.

Round Table on the Impact of Employment Programmes on Peacebuilding

The International Labour Organization (ILO), the Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank (WB) have teamed up for an extensive joint research on the impact of employment programmes on peacebuilding, funded by the UN-WB Fragility and Conflict Partnership Trust Fund. The research includes a literature review, country-case studies in Lebanon, Liberia and Timor-Leste, and an overall assessment of all employment programmes designed and implemented by the four entities since 2005 in conflict-affected countries, with a more in-depth assessment of a subset of these programmes.

The research team, led by Professor Tilman Brück, will present existing evidence on the peacebuilding impact of labour-based programmes, targeted vocational training programmes, and programmes focused on the development of small and micro enterprises.

A Round Table will take place in Nairobi at the offices of the World Bank on 15 June 2016 from 09:30-13:30. During the Round Table the research team will seek feedback on the initial findings of the draft report from a wide range of stakeholders, including programme officers, government officials, NGOs, academics and development partners. Case studies from the research will be presented and a panel consisting of different stakeholders will discuss the applicability of the research to their work.

Your feedback will help to improve the final outputs of this research to be disseminated in September 2016 during the opening of the General Assembly in New York.

If you are interested to attend the event, please RSVP to Yun Jae Chun as soon as possible and contact her with any questions.

International Research Workshop “Emergency Agriculture and Food Security”

The aim of the workshop is to assemble senior and junior researchers and practitioners from Germany and abroad to discuss this new and exciting research agenda and to identify common research interests and future research collaborations. The workshop will take place on May 30-31, 2016 in Berlin, Germany, at Humboldt-University.

The overall research themes include:

  • Forms and representations of emergencies and fragile environments;
  • Drivers of food insecurity in emergencies and in fragile environments;
  • Agricultural practices in emergencies;
  • Consequences of food insecurity in emergencies and in fragile environments, especially at the individual level;
  • The role and impact of local and global policy actors for emergency agriculture and food security;
  • New and emerging data sources and indicators; and
  • Methods and techniques.

More information at www.igzev.de/kosmos2016 and here. Please write to kosmos2016@igzev.de if you are interested to attend. Attendance by invitation only – places are strictly limited.

Call for Papers: Lisbon Meeting on Institutions and Political Economy 2016

The third edition of the Lisbon Meeting on Institutions and Political Economy will take place in Lisbon, the 19th and 20th of February 2016. This meeting consists of sessions where contributed papers are presented, and two keynote public addresses by Toke Aidt (University of Cambridge) and Georg Vanberg (Duke University). We welcome submissions of complete papers on the following topics:

  • Coalition Theory and Governance (session chaired by Georg Vanberg)
  • Local government finance and political economy
  • Political accountability
  • Political institutions (session chaired by Toke Aidt)
  • Conflict and fragility (session chaired by Tilman Brück)

Submissions should take the form of a complete paper, and be sent to: callforpapers@lisbonmeeting.org.pt. Submissions should be sent no later than January 3th 2016. See more information here.

Call for Applications for Doctoral Study in Berlin

The Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences (BGSS) is calling for applications to its International Doctoral Program and to its European PhD in Socio-Economic and Statistical Studies (SESS) starting in October 2016. Please submit your application from November 30, 2015 to January 10, 2016 via theBGSS online platforms. See more information here.

New Study by ISDC: Costs of Conflict Comparable to Costs of Climate Change

Calculating the impact of different societal challenges, such as climate change, HIV/AIDS or cancer, uncovers the scale, distribution and structure of their economic burdens. Since violent conflict affects billions of people worldwide, the analysis of its impact is important. Using an integrated economic model accounting for multiple forms of conflict, the study finds that in the absence of violent conflict since 1960, global GDP in 2007 would have been 15.7% (10.9 trillion USD) larger. Furthermore, global income inequality would have been significantly lower. The largest absolute impacts are associated with domestic strife in China and India while Afghanistan suffers the largest relative burden. In contrast, many developed economies actually benefit from war. This shows that violent conflict is an integral part of the world economic structure, with a burden possibly exceeding that of climate change.

Full reference: de Groot, O.J., C. Bozzoli and T. Brück, (2015). “The Global Economic Burden of Violent Conflict”. HiCN Working Papers, Nr. 199.

Call for Papers – Deadline Extended: Measuring the Social and Economic Impact of Conflicts and Political Instability on Agriculture (Session at ICAS VII, 26-28 October 2016, Rome)

Relatively little is known about how households struggling to survive protracted violence and displacement get by economically, what shapes their (agricultural) livelihoods and what determines their food security. This is true both of socio-economic determinants and of the natural science of smallholder agriculture in conflict and fragile settings. Standard agricultural surveys in conflict-affected countries only sporadically feature questions related to the causes and consequences of violence, leaving treatments ad-hoc and incomparable across different settings. This makes it hard to build a systematic and comparable understanding of how violence has affected different people, communities and population groups, and constitutes a key gap in agricultural policies in conflict-affected settings. Building on these insights, one session at the Seventh International Conference on Agricultural Statistics (ICAS VII) will review recent efforts to measure violence, conflict, instability and fragility at the micro-level in the agricultural sector in low, middle and high income countries. Particular preference will be given to papers developing and testing new methodologies for data collection on conflict dynamics or individual behaviour and welfare outcomes in rural settings and to papers using such data analytically to understand the performance of agriculture and rural development in times of violent conflict. The deadline for the submission of abstracts has been extended till 15 November 2015. For more information, see here and here.

New Training Course on Measuring Conflict in Household Surveys

ISDC and the LSMS team of the World Bank are co-organizing a new training course on measuring violent conflict in micro-level surveys. The training course aims to promote the collection of data on conflict through the implementation of household surveys in conflict-affected areas, in order to improve the quality of survey data on the effects of violent conflict exposure, enhance the overall understanding of socioeconomic change, and inform policy making. The workshop will equip practitioners, mostly national experts working in conflict-affected countries collecting micro-level survey data, with an appreciation for the importance of collecting data on conflict at the micro-level and with practical knowledge and hands-on training in data collection methods. The course will take place in Berlin, Germany, from 23 till 27 November 2015, and funding is available. The deadline for applications is 27 August 2015. Further information is available here.

Call for Papers: 11th Annual “Households in Conflict Network” (HiCN) Workshop, Toronto

The Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto and the Households in Conflict Network (HiCN) are organizing an international workshop to bring together researchers from different social sciences and countries sharing a common interest in studying the connections among institutions, development, armed conflict and political violence. Keynote speakers are Professor Eliana La Ferrara (Bocconi University) and Professor Elisabeth Wood (Yale University). Please send your completed paper and a short CV (maximum two pages) in PDF format by email to hicnworkshop2015@gmail.com by 4 September 2015, indicating if you require financial assistance to attend the workshop. We expect acceptances to be communicated by 30 September 2015. The conference language will be English. Submitted papers may be considered for publication in a journal special issue or edited volume; further details will be shared at a later date. More information can be found here.

Call for Papers: “Life in Kyrgyzstan” Conference, Bishkek, October 2015

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), ISDC – International Security and Development Center, and the University of Central Asia (UCA) are pleased to announce the first annual ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ Conference to take place in Bishkek on 1-2 October 2015. The two-day conference will bring together national and international experts from government and the public sector, development agencies, non-governmental organizations, academia and research institutions, and media to exchange knowledge and experiences on recent socio-economic developments in Kyrgyzstan and Central Asia, and to promote evidence-based policy making. Those interested in submitting sessions or papers to the conference are welcome to submit their applications by 30 June 2015 at likconference2015@gmail.com. Further details can be found here.

“Life in Kyrgyzstan” Summer School

ISDC,  the Institute of Public Policy and Administration of the University of Central Asia (UCA), SIPRI, the United Nations University Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (UNU-MERIT) and 3ie will offer a Summer School in Kyrgyzstan in June 2015 entitled ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan International Summer School on Impact Evaluation Methods in Central Asia ’. The Summer School will teach the theory and practice of theory-based impact evaluations and related state-of-the-art quantitative and qualitative techniques. Participants will gain a high-level understanding of the importance of these instruments and their role in the design and assessment of public policies and development interventions. Applications are invited from practitioners, professionals and academics commissioning, conducting or interpreting impact evaluations at national or international organisations, non-governmental organisations, agencies, ministries, universities and think tanks based in or working with Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan). Applicants residing and working outside Central Asia will be considered on a case-by-case basis. The application deadline is 15 March 2015. Further information can be accessed here.

10th Households in Conflict Network (HiCN) Annual Workshop in February 2015

The tenth annual workshop of the Households in Conflict Network (HiCN) was held on 10 February 2015 in collaboration with the World Bank in Washington, DC.  The theme of the workshop was “Micro-foundations of conflict and violence: economic analysis and impact evaluation”. The call for papers can be found here and the programme here.

Paper on Local Budget Transparency and Participation in Kyrgyzstan

Damir Esenaliev co-authored a paper investigating the determinants of civic participation in local budget processes in rural areas in the Kyrgyz Republic by using data from the Life in Kyrgyzstan survey, conducted in 2012. The analysis of the data suggests that although civic awareness and interest in local budget processes is relatively high, the participation rate in local budgeting processes is low. The paper also shows that interest, awareness, and participation are positively associated with the age, education, employment, risk-taking attitudes, trust, and social capital of respondents. The paper documents that unawareness and lack of participation are largely related to being female, of non-Kyrgyz ethnic origin, inactive in the labor market, recent internal migrants, and residents of communities with poor infrastructure.
Esenaliev, Damir & Kisunko, Gregory. 2015. “Local budget transparency and participation : evidence from the Kyrgyz Republic.” Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 7154. Washington, DC: World Bank Group. The full paper can be found here.

Why and How to Conduct Impact Evaluations in Humanitarian Emergencies

Anastasia Aladysheva and Tilman Brück contributed to a working paper published by the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie) on theory-based impact evaluations in the context of humanitarian emergencies. Despite the widespread occurrence of humanitarian emergencies such as epidemics, earthquakes, droughts, floods and violent conflict and despite the significant financial resources devoted to humanitarian assistance, systematic learning from such interventions using rigorous theory-based impact evaluations are very rare. The objective of this paper is therefore to examine the extent to which scientific impact evaluation methods can provide evidence to help improve the effectiveness and efficiency in humanitarian action. This paper explores the methodological options and challenges associated with collecting and generating high quality evidence needed to answer key questions about the performance of humanitarian assistance, including whether assistance is reaching the right people, at the right time, is bringing about the desired changes in their lives (effectiveness) and is being delivered in the right doses, ways and with manageable costs (efficiency). With the help of six case studies and drawing on real-life examples from the small but growing academic literature, we demonstrate how impact evaluation methods be used successfully and in an ethical manner to learn about how to improve humanitarian assistance. A key lesson from our review is that it pays to be prepared. Much information is being collected these days about the risks of various emergencies unfolding, be they sudden onset or slow onset emergencies. Hence national actors and international donors can prepare for these events and for conducting meaningful impact evaluations. Given the overwhelming needs and the lack of funds, doing more with limited resources is a key challenge for humanitarian assistance and impact evaluation is one way of achieving this.
Puri, J., A. Aladysheva, V. Iversen, Y. Ghorpade and T. Brück (2014). “What Methods May Be Used in Impact Evaluations of Humanitarian Assistance?”. 3ie Working Paper, Nr. 22. The full paper can be found here.

Money Can’t Buy Love but Can it Buy Peace? Evidence from Northern Ireland

Tilman Brück and Neil Ferguson published a working paper on the effectiveness of a large-scale peace-building programme in Northern Ireland. In 1998, the Good Friday Agreement concluded a period of violence in Northern Ireland yet the scars of the conflict remained prevalent in the political landscape. Rival communities remained divided, economic performance was poor and intercommunity tensions frequently manifested. In a bid to reinforce progress towards a peaceful and stable society, over €1bn of public money was spent between 2000 and 2006 on small-scale community and business ventures. Despite the scale of expenditure, however, little rigorous effort has been made to test the success of the programmes. Splitting Northern Ireland into 582 electoral wards, we merge individual-level on perceptions of neighbourhood quality from the British Household Panel Survey with detailed PEACE II accounts. Noting potential selection and omitted variables biases, we implement two-stage random effects models and show that neither level of spending, nor number of projects, in a region is associated with improvements in perceptions of neighbourhood quality.
Brück, T. and N. Ferguson (2014). “Money Can’t Buy Love but Can it Buy Peace? Evidence from the EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation”. HiCN Working Papers, Nr. 177. The full paper can be found here.

Lecture on European Defence and Security Policy

„Die europäische Rüstungs- und Verteidigungspolitik:
Ist Europa eine Kriegsmacht?” 
with Tilman Brück
 on 22 September 2014 at 6pm at the Schwarzkopf-Stiftung, Sophienstraße 28 – 29, 10178 Berlin. Further details including a link to register can be found here.

Public Discussion on European Peace

“Der europäische Traum vom ewigen Frieden” will be discussed by Herfried Münkler, Markus Bentler, Tilman Brück, Oliver Diggelmann and Norbert Röttgen at the NZZ Podium Berlin on 15 September 2014 at 6:30pm at the BBAW in Berlin. Further details including a link to register can be found here.

Final Workshop of the Training and Mobility Network for the Economic Analysis of Conflict (TAMNEAC)

The workshop is co-organized by Université Libre de Bruxelles, ISDC – International Security and Development Center and Humboldt-University of Berlin and it is being held on 8 and 9 September 2014 in Brussels at Université Libre de Bruxelles. TAMNEAC provides training to a young generation of professionals and researchers in tackling the challenges associated with mass violent conflict in developing countries. Using robust empirical evidence, TAMNEAC researchers analyse the drivers, forms and socio-economic consequences of various types of mass violent conflict, including war, as well as the risk management strategies of individuals and households to cope with conflict. The research provides a better understanding of conflict and development issues for policy makers, security and development professionals. TAMNEAC’s evidence-based research offers a significant contribution to policies, program planning, implementation that can have a dramatic impact on the lives of people who have been affected by conflict. The workshop presents an opportunity to learn about TAMNEAC’s extensive research on conflict and to network with researchers and experts in this field. Further information can be found here.