( 01-July-2014 / National University of Singapore )
This paper studies cultural representations which critically address the high level of environmental degradation ushered in by successive regimes of China's modernization. On the one hand, it will review a group of blog cartoons reacting to a recent environmental hazard, the Huangpu River floating pigs incident, which were published beginning from mid-March 2013. On the other hand, it looks at intellectual responses to a political economy of short-term profit extraction whose negative impact far exceeds the destruction of the nation's landscapes. Selective readings of lower rungs fiction (diceng wenxue), landscape poetry and multi-media art, and theoretical essays on questions of landscape aesthetics will discuss how these authors express their worries about the consequences of a narrowly functional approach towards natural resources. According to them, the foreclosing of traditional aesthetic principles that used to support sustainability in modern modes of governance has yielded an unprecedented moral decline of the community as well as an alarming depletion of the nation's non-human recreational powers. In conclusion, five kinds of environmental subjects will tentatively be identified together with their different patterns of agency.
This report on “Fair Trial Rights in Cambodia” (the “Report”) is an output of the Cambodian Trial Monitoring Project implemented by the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (“CCHR”). CCHR’s vision is of a non-violent Kingdom of Cambodia (“Cambodia”), in which people enjoy their fundamental human rights, are treated equally, are empowered to participate in democracy and share the benefits of Cambodia’s development.
One of the fundamental principles of a democratic state is the principle of seperation and independence of powers between the legislative, executive and judiciary. Independence of the courts is a key element of the rule of law and guarantees fair hearings. As such, the 1993 Constitution of the Kingdom of Cambodia (the “Constitution”) establishes the independence of the judiciary and guarantees the principle of the separation of powers.
( 01-June-2014 / National University of Singapore )
Economic geographers tout social upgrading via economic upgrading as a way of improving labour conditions, while labour geographers underscore the inherent contradictions of corporate governance initiatives. They point to the conceptual flaws of firm level analysis, given the limited attentiveness to worker actions and labour voice. Others point to the inherent tensions in global governance initiatives as they traverse along global supply chains, and the absence of labour voice within corporate codes. This neglect underpins my paper, which uses Sri Lanka as a litmus case to critically engage with labour voice around ethical codes and analyse its efficacy as a form of social upgrading.
( 01-June-2014 / National University of Singapore )
Singapore’s new Green or Rail Corridor created on the site of the former Keretapi Tanah Meleyu (KTM) rail line resembles influential global models like Manhattan’s repurposed elevated rail line park, High Line. In fact, the roots of the Green Corridor are more properly located in Singapore’s planning and nature conservancy traditions going back decades. The straight-line dimensions and, by Singaporean standards, less manicured appearance of the Green Corridor enables this green space to capture the human and natural diversity and complexity of an urban setting better known for its uniform standards and “master plans.” In the process opportunities have opened up for partnerships between state and civil society in the planning process.
( 01-May-2014 / National University of Singapore )
Historically Muhammadiyah has played a crucial role as vanguard of modernist Islam within Indonesia; more contemporarily Muhammadiyah members have dominated segments of the state bureaucracy, wielding considerable policy influence in key sectors. Given its importance, relatively little solid data is available on this influential organization – and even less is known about how its own social identity may be changing over time. Recognizing this, The Asia Foundation and LSI (Lembaga Survey Indonesia) partnered to conduct a nation-wide quantitative survey, followed by in-depth Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) aimed at gathering both quantitative and qualitative data on a range of issues related to how Muhammadiyah members perceive their own group’s identity, and how it may be changing. I propose to present the results of this survey, in particular focusing on four key areas: a) consumption of social services- particularly health and education, b) the role of religious leaders within Muhammadiyah, c) relationship between NU and Muhammadiyah, and d) views on democracy, gender, and pluralism. The survey results indicate both continuity and change, and present a portrait of an organization that is adapting in different ways to its rapidly changing political and social environment.
( 09-April-2014 / comfrel )
The year 2013 marked twenty years of political transition in Cambodia. The twenty years anniversary over the end of a protracted civil war and first democratic parliamentary elections in 1993 led however to no public celebrations, but disillusionment over Cambodia’s political future. The constitution 1993 had proclaimed to establish a liberal democratic political system based on the principles of a multiparty system and pluralism. The aim as proclaimed in the constitution and the preceding Paris Peace Treaties 1991 was to end the protracted civil war of the 1980s and to transform the formerly socialist government system to a liberal democratic system. Peace had returned to Cambodia, but the public expectation to consolidate a liberal democratic political system had not been met in the past two decades.
( 22-February-2014 / Asia Monitor Resourc Center )
The garment industry has been the chief engine of the Cambodian economy for the past two decades since its establishment in 1994. However, garment workers still account for a large part of the country's working poor. Workers are universally unhappy about the quality of life in general and the minimum wage in particular.
The Working Group on the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), established in accordance with Human Rights Council resolution 5/1 of 18 June 2007, held its eighteenth session from 27 January to 7 February 2014. The review of Cambodia was held at the 4th meeting on 28
January 2014. The delegation of Cambodia was headed by H.E. Mr Mak Sambath, Vice Chair of the National Human Rights Committee of Cambodia. At its 10th meeting held on 31 January 2014, the Working Group adopted the report on Cambodia.
( 22-January-2014 / HRW )
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