February 2015 SIPRI Update out now

Posted by Editor at Feb 28, 2015 12:10 PM |

The February 2015 SIPRI Update is out now—read it online or subscribe to receive the SIPRI Update in your inbox each month.

In this issue we present an essay by Oliver Bräuner and Daha Park on how non-interference limits China's role in the fight against Islamic State. They write:

The rapid advance of the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) has caught China, and the rest of the international community, by surprise. With massive Chinese investments in Iraq’s energy sector and a sizeable community of Chinese workers, the conflict represents a challenge to China’s traditional non-interference policy.

Will China be forced to become more active in the fight against ISIS to protect its citizens and economic interests in Iraq? And will this provide new opportunities for China and European Union (EU) member states to identify common interests and cooperate on matters of global security?

Read the full essay online or browse the full list of SIPRI Essays from 2009 to 2015.

In brief: SIPRI activities in February 2015

Posted by Hedda Norming at Feb 27, 2015 12:00 AM |
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  • 4 Feb., Stockholm
    SIPRI’s Security and Development Programme published a report (PDF) summarizing the November 2014 SIPRI–Swedish Red Cross workshop on violence against healthcare workers. 


  •  4 Feb., Stockholm
    SIPRI hosted a lecture by Dr Joseph F. Pilat, Program Manager in the National Security Office at Los Alamos National Laboratory, on the future of President Obama’s ‘Prague Vision’. Dr Pilat reviewed issues that will be highlighted at the upcoming nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference, including the humanitarian impact of nuclear explosions.


  • 11 Feb., Stockholm
    SIPRI and the Embassy of Japan in Sweden hosted a lecture by Professor Shinichi Kitaoka, President of International University of Japan, on Japan's security policy in the era of new geopolitics. Professor Kitaoka explained how Japan, under the Abe administration, has sought to cope with changes in the international security environment and find common ground with states in Western Europe.


  • 11 Feb., Paris
    Dr Aude Fleurant, Director of the SIPRI Arms and Military Expenditure Programme, attended a conference entitled ‘La rupture stratégique’ (strategic disruption), organized by the Institute for Strategic Research of the French Ministry of Defence (IRSEM).  Fleurant gave a presentation on the possible economic drivers of strategic disruption.


  • 13 Feb., Paris
    Mark Bromley, Co-Director of the SIPRI Dual-Use and Arms Trade Control Programme, and Dr Aude Fleurant took part in a seminar organized by the Defence Studies Department at King’s College London and the Institute for Strategic Research of the French Ministry of Defence (IRSEM). The subject of the seminar was major trends in arms production and transfers in times of austerity, with a focus on challenges for France and the United Kingdom. Bromley presented a paper on recent trends in British arms transfers and arms export policies.


  • 16 Feb., Brussels
    SIRPI Researcher Ekaterina Klimenko participated in a workshop on Arctic security organized by the European Union Institute for Strategic Studies. She gave a presentation on hard security and military developments in the Arctic, with a focus on Russia.


  • 23 Feb., London
    Dr Sam Perlo-Freeman, Head of the SIPRI Military Expenditure Project, attended the 2015 Chatham House Security and Defence conference with the theme of  ‘Rising powers and the future of defence cooperation’. Perlo-Freeman was one of the speakers for the overview session, responding to the question ‘To what extent have recent conflicts, disruptive technologies and the global financial crisis changed the size and allocation of defence budgets?’.


  • 23 Feb., online
    SIPRI Researcher Lina Grip discusses the importing, impact and control of small arms in Africa in the latest issue of Contemporary Security Policy




Final report from SIPRI’s New Geopolitics of Peace Operations Initiative now online

Posted by Hedda Norming at Feb 25, 2015 12:00 AM |

On 18 February 2015 the findings of the final report from SIPRI’s New Geopolitics of Peace Operations Initiative were launched at an event at the United Nations headquarters in New York City.

The report, The Future Peace Operations Landscape: Voices from stakeholders around the globe,
by SIPRI Senior Researcher Jaïr van der Lijn and SIPRI Researcher Xenia Avezov, is informed by a series of regional dialogue meetings and dozens of interviews with regional stakeholders. It examines regional perspectives on security issues and conflict-management approaches, and questions relating to the motives, financing and capacities of current UN peace operations.

At a time when the character of conflicts appears to be changing and the power balance between emerging and non-traditional powers is shifting, the report takes stock of changes in the global security landscape and their implications for future peace operations, and argues that the success of future peace operations will depend on managing expectations, allocating resources and balancing states’ contributions.

The launch event included a panel featuring Edmond Mulet (UN Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations), Youssef Mahmoud (Senior Adviser at the International Peace Institute, and a member of the High-Level Independent Panel on Peace Operations), Janne Taalas (Deputy Permanent Representative of Finland to the UN), Michèle Auga (Executive Director of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung’s New York office), and SIPRI's Jaïr van der Lijn

Read the full press release. The final report from SIPRI’s New Geopolitics of Peace Operations Initiative is now available for download via the SIPRI website. For more information about the report please .

Call for applications: summer school on impact evaluation methods in Central Asia

Posted by Editor at Feb 19, 2015 11:37 AM |

Life in Kyrgyzstan Summer SchoolIn June 2015 SIPRI and the Institute of Public Policy and Administration of the University of Central Asia (UCA), the International Security and Development Center (ISDC) and the United Nations University Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (UNU-MERIT) will offer a Summer School programme in Kyrgyzstan entitled ‘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.

Course content will include lectures on rigorous impact evaluations, experimental and quasi-experimental methods to conduct evaluations and how to implement them. Participants will also gain hands-on experience in designing impact evaluations through group exercises and will learn about the ‘Life in Kyrgyzstan’ panel dataset collected by the organizers.

Applications are invited from practitioners, professionals and academics commissioning, conducting or interpreting impact evaluations at national or international organizations, non-governmental organizations, 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.

A completed first degree in a relevant social science is a minimum requirement for acceptance. A working knowledge of basic statistics is required. The online component of the selection process includes basic statistics exercises. Graduate students may apply but will not be given priority.

Read more about the Summer School (PDF), including details of how to apply, or for further information. Find out more about SIPRI's Life in Kyrgyzstan project.

SIPRI hosts event at Munich Security Conference

Posted by Editor at Feb 12, 2015 12:00 AM |
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On 7 February SIPRI hosted a discussion on the future actions of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) at the Munich Security Conference.

Since December 2012 the OSCE Helsinki+40 process has been evaluating its activities and trying to identify ways to enhance the OSCE’s effectiveness. The OSCE continues to play an important role in certain crises, including the crisis in Ukraine. The OSCE’s monitoring mission in Ukraine is a clear demonstration of the fact that, even in difficult times, the organization is able to generate full support for activities that no other actor could carry out.

However, as discussed during the SIPRI event, the role of the OSCE cannot be limited to crisis response. It must remain a constructive hub in the continuous process of preventing the re-division of Europe. In order for the OSCE to function as a real anchor for cooperative security in Europe, sustained engagement is needed at the highest level. This can only be secured through demonstrated impact.

Furthermore, in order to make the work of the OSCE more effective, attention needs to be paid to all parts of the conflict cycle, and not just on interventions when crises have escalated to dangerous levels.

SIPRI would like to express its gratitude to the Swedish Parliament for generously supporting the OSCE-related research being carried out at SIPRI, without which this event would not have been possible.

Read more about the conference or contact SIPRI Communications Director Stephanie Blenckner for further information.