Newsletter November 2009

Posted on November 25, 2009

DEPARTMENT OF

POLITICAL SCIENCES

NEWSLETTER

November 2009

Dear Students,

After a year of exciting events we round up by documenting some of the highlights of this semester. We hope you will find our last newsletter for 2009 informative.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS SEMESTER

Our department hosted a successful international workshop on 16 July 2009 entitled Promoting Democracy: the State of Public Opinion and Political Behaviour in South Africa. This event was sponsored by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung with additional support from the Embassy of the United States in South Africa. Prof Maxi Schoeman, Mr Roland Henwood, Ms Heather Thuynsma and Ms Alida Kok were involved in the organisation of the workshop. Speakers from the United States, Sweden, Germany and South Africa gave presentations at the event.

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCES, SUMMER SCHOOLS AND SEMINARS

On 10 June 2009, Prof Africa delivered a seminar on Intelligence Service Reform and Accountability at the headquarters of the Department for International Development (DFID) in London. The seminar was also addressed by Dr Hans Born, a specialist on the topic, from the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). The seminar, attended by academics, policy makers and development and security officials from the UK, also saw the launch of a book “Changing intelligence dynamics in Africa”, which was co-edited by Prof Africa and Mr John Kwadjo.

From 13 – 20 August 2009, Prof Africa was a participant on the prestigious Presidential Friends of Indonesia Programme, in Bali and Jakarta, Indonesia. The Programme, coordinated by the Department of Foreign Affairs (Indonesia) annually brings together influential academics, business leaders, cultural workers, media workers, and human rights advocates from around the work in an effort to expose them to Indonesian political, cultural, social and economic life. This public diplomacy initiative is intended to strengthen people to people relations between Indonesians and the countries whose representatives participate on the Programme.

Prof Africa delivered a paper at the DCAF Regional Foundation Council meeting in Pretoria. The meeting was hosted by the South African Government, and co-organised by the Department of Defence, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) and the DCAF. The meeting discussed the prospects for security sector reform in Southern Africa, and was attended by academic and non-governmental institutions, SADC, the EU and a significant number of diplomatic missions in Pretoria.

Prof Du Plessis attended a Summer School on Indonesian Studies at the University of Indonesia, Jakarta (Indonesia) from 20-27 July 2009.

Dr Yolanda Spies attended the International Forum on Diplomatic Training in Vienna during September 2009, where she presented a paper on the theme of "Diplomatic Training for Peace".

Ms Vicky Graham presented a paper at the International Political Science Association’s (IPSA) World Congress in Santiago, Chile in July this year, The title of the paper: “Assessing the Quality of Democracy: Theoretical Explanation and Dimension Identification.” She also went to Peru the week after the conference and canoed up the Madre de Dios River, hiked through the jungle, visited Inca ruins and saw Macchu Picchu. So academics are NOT boring!!

Prof Schoeman was on sabbatical leave from early August until early November. She spent two weeks in the UK teaching in a summer school programme at Oxford University after which she took up a guest research fellowship at the Nordic Africa Institute in Uppsala Sweden. During her time at NAI she worked closely with the internationally renowned African political economist, Prof Fantu Cheru, and with Dr Cyril Obi (Nigeria) and Dr Godwin Murunga (Kenya). Her research focused on a critique of the liberal peace with reference to the security architecture of the African Union, and on the experience of SANDF female peacekeepers in the DRC. During her stay in Uppsala she participated as a speaker, presenter and respondent in numerous workshops dealing with African politics and security, and travelled to Trondheim in Norway to deliver a paper at the annual Nordic Africa Days conference.

From 26-29 October Dr Wolmarans attended a workshop on the role and place of public intellectuals in South Africa at the Nirox Center at the Cradle of Humankind.

CIPS ACTIVITIES

CIPS hosted a number of interesting events that brought together academics and practitioners on a variety of topics.

In July 2009, Prof Abdi Samatar from the University of Minnesota presented an Africa Dialogue Lecture entitled “Somalia’s Illusive Peace: Two Pathologies”.

Dr. Witney W Schneidman served as Advisor on African Affairs to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Africa with the Clinton Administration. In October, CIPS, in partnership with the American Embassy, introduced the Edward Kennedy Memorial Lecture Series that commemorates US Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s lifelong struggle for justice and equality, and recognises the late Senator’s special regard for the people and country of South Africa. Dr Schneidman presented the inaugural lecture entitled “New Beginnings, Enduring Challenges: American Foreign Policy to Africa from Kennedy to Obama”. On 26 Oct Dr Schneidman participated in a CIPS Roundtable entitled “Washington, Pretoria and Africa: How do we know success when we see it”’ The roundtable comprised of senior academics, senior officials from DIRCO and three of the department’s postgraduate students, Mr Casper Claassen, Mr Edgar Ntasano and Ms Ina-Mart Hugo.

In November CIPS will collaborate with the Austrian, German and Hungarian Embassies to commemorate the Fall of the Berlin Wall. The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs from Hungary, HE László Várkonyi, and senior representatives from Austria and Germany will present a special Africa Dialogue Lecture entitled “Freedom and Democracy – From the Dismantling of the Iron Curtain to Schenge”. You are encouraged to visit the associated exhibition in the library January – February 2010.

THE MERCURY PROJECT

Research for the MERCURY project (Multilateralism and the EU in the Contemporary Global Order) has kicked off and the MERCURY team is looking forward to the next meeting in Rome in March 2010. Our department is one of nine international partners in this project. Prof Maxi Schoeman, Prof Gerrit Olivier, Dr Lorenzo Fioramonti, Dr Yolanda Spies, Ms Alida Kok, Mr Julian Kitipov, Mr Casper Claassen and Ms Ina Hugo are involved in MERCURY. You can find out more about our partner’s information at: www.mercury-fp7.net/
 

LOCAL CONFERENCES AND SEMINARS

On 28 July 2009 Prof Africa delivered a guest lecture to the Executive National Security Programme (ENSP) on “National Power and the role it plays in National Security”, at the Defence College, Pretoria.

Mr Patrick Dzimiri, a DPhil candidate in the department (and assistant lecturer until recently when he took up a lectureship at the University of Venda) presented a paper on the theme of “Youth and the Responsibility to Protect” at the joint SAAPS/AISA colloquium in Pretoria, during October 2009.

HOSTING

From 3 – 5 August 2009, Prof Africa hosted Dr Anil Athale, a visiting researcher and scholar from the Initiative for Peace and Democracy (INPAD) in Pune, India. She arranged for Dr Athale to interact with members of the Department, DIRCO, as well as scholars from other universities. Dr Athale presented a round table discussion on the topic of India’s security challenges in the 21st century, during his stay.

During August 2009, the department was visited by the Director of Diplomatic Studies of Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Prof Alan Henrikson, a distinguished academic and author of numerous publications in the field of diplomacy and foreign policy. He lectured to undergraduate as well as postgraduate students in the department.

PUBLICATIONS

Well-kept secrets: access to information and the South African intelligence services was authored by Prof Africa and published in July 2009. Based on her doctoral dissertation, this book, which was co-published by the Institute for Global Dialogue and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, will be launched at the end of this year.

Prof Hussein Solomon (with Allison Coady) were the authors of the following articles: "Afghanistan's Arrested Development: Combating Taliban Resurgence with an eye for lasting peace", (published in the South African Journal of International Affairs, Vol.16 No. 1) and "Deconstructing Constructive Engagement: Examining Mbeki's South African Foreign Policy Towards Zimbabwe", (published in World Affairs, 13 (1). Prof Solomon’s article “Darfur: The Nightmare Continues", was translated into Japanese and published in Conflict Studies in the Humanities, (1), Osaka University, Japan. "Iran and the Poverty of Political Islam," was an article written by Prof Solomon and published as Occasional Paper 1, of the Middle East Institute, New Delhi, India.

Mr Julian Kitipov’s article:Regionalisation in Southern Africa and the impact of the global financial crisis” was published in Africa Review: Journal of African Studies Association of India (New Delhi). Vol. 1,(2) July-December 2009.

Ms Alida Kok and two of her former colleagues from ACCORD (The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes) will publish a report before the end of 2009 entitled Natural Resources, the Environment and Conflict: A Civil Society Perspective on Conflict in Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sudan. Research for this report, conducted by Ms Kok in Burundi, the DRC and Kenya in early 2009, was used as the basis of roundtable discussions between African civil society and the European Union on 22 September 2009 in Addis Ababa.

MASTER OF DIPLOMATIC STUDIES (MDIPS)

A second intake of Master of Diplomatic Studies students commenced their two-year MDIPS programme during July 2009. As in the case of the first intake which started last year, the participants are all senior South African government officials, tasked with the conduct of international liaison. The majority of these officials are career diplomats, from the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, but the current intake also includes officials from the Departments of Health, Defence, and Science &Technology. The group spends several full-time bloc periods on campus, during which time they are immersed in the theory that underpins their professional work. The wealth of combined experience among the participants enriches the programme and allows for spirited interaction with the many local and foreign academics and IR practitioners who are invited to lecture in the programme. The success of the new MDIPS programme has in fact spawned a deluge of enquiries about admissions, and the department is considering mechanisms to open this taught masters degree programme to a wider African and non-governmental clientele.

GUEST LECTURES FOR OUR STUDENTS

We decided this semester to expose our first year (PTO 120: International Cooperation) students to lectures by experts in fields related to the students’ course work. Mr Jonathan Smallridge, Second Secretary of State in the Embassy of the USA, lectured our first years on US hegemony in the post Cold War era and Mr Guy Lamb, Head of the Arms Management Programme, Institute for Security Studies, discussed the issues underlying global arms control and disarmament with them.

Our third year Foreign Policy students were also privileged to have the following guest lecturers during this semester:

· Ambassador Hannes Spies lectured them on multilateralism in South Africa’s foreign policy with specific reference to IBSA.

· Mr Jonathan Smallridge, second Secretary of State in the Embassy of the USA, gave a lecture on American foreign policy in the Obama era.

· The topic of Prof Garth le Pere’s lecture was South Africa’s foreign policy in the Mbeki and Zuma eras.

OUR THIRD YEAR FUNCTION

On 8 October the department invited all finalist 3rd year students studying Political Science and / or International Relations to an informal year-end function with the lecturers in the department. Our guest speaker, Mr D Naidoo from DIRCO, reflected on the importance of academic studies in the working environment. He is one of our MDIPS students and we all thoroughly enjoyed his speech.

ISSUP ACTIVITIES

The Institute for Strategic Studies (ISSUP), published two bulletins, titled Military Veterans in South Africa’ and ‘Military Assistance to the Civil Authorities: The Case of South Africa, in their July and October editions respectively.

CONGRATULATIONS!

Congratulations to Dr Gerhard Wolmarans on the recent completion of his Doctorate (DLitt et Phil) degree, from the University of Johannesburg entitled An appraisal of the post-1994 ANC-in-government: an application of the political theory of Michael Oakeshott. More grease to your elbows!

Congratulations also to the students who successfully completed their studies and received their degrees during the September graduation ceremony. These include:

Six students who received Masters degrees. They are:

· Mandy Eileen Solomon (Diplomatic Studies) under the supervision of Dr Y Spies.

· Josef Frederik Fourie and Michael James Stiles (Security Studies) under the supervision of Prof A Du Plessis.

· Jean Paul Nyirubutama (Security Studies) under the supersivion of Prof M Hough.

· Carine Zamay Kiala (International Relations) under the supervision of Prof M Schoeman.

· Cristina de Frederico Pessane (International Relations) under the supervision of Prof H Solomon.

4 students received Honours (International Relations) degrees:

· 3 students who received the degree BPolSci (International Studies), one of them, Mr G Bender, with distinction.

· 1 student who received the degree BPolSci (Political Studies),

Congratulations to those students who were awarded other degrees, such as BAdmin, BA Journalism and BA. Well done! We are proud of you. Best wishes for the future.

STUDENTS ON THE MOVE

Upon completing her Bachelor of Political Studies (International Relations) Honours degree in our department, Ms Immaculate Dadiso Motsi read Public Policy at the National University of Singapore on a full scholarship. She graduated with a Masters in Public Policy (MPP) degree with specialization in Economics in May 2009.

In September 2009 Ms Motsi will start her PhD in Development Studies at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies at the University of Geneva, Switzerland. With her sights set on a career in the World Bank, her thesis will focus on the Impact Evaluation challenges posed in Non-Traditional Official Development Assistance and Budgetary Support.

WE SAY GOODBYE TO…

· Prof Mike Hough, who will retire at the end of this year after a career of more than 40 years in our department, 30 years of which were spent also as director of ISSUP. Prof Hough’s retirement represents the end of an era in the department and the department wishes to thank him for his contribution to our academic work over a period of decades. Upon his departure ISSUP and CIPS will be merged into a new institute – the Institute of Political and Strategic Studies (IPSA) under the directorship of Prof Sandy Africa. We hope that IPSA will prove a worthy successor to ISSUP and CIPS.

· Mr Shaun Edge, who took up a position at the Japanese Embassy.

· Ms Zani Naude who very competently managed CIPS from August until November.

· Ms Lydia Bezuidenhout, from our Centre for International Politics (CIPS).

We wish you all the best in these new chapters of your lives.

And on a more personal note, congratulations to Ms Zani Naudé, who got engaged over the weekend of 8 November to Mr Guy Lamb.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION AND DATES FOR 2010

SENIOR UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

Senior students must take note that quarterly modules (e.g. IPL 356 or STL 351) are no longer presented by this department. Students will only be allowed to register for semester modules (e.g. IPL 310 or STL 310).

· Monday 25 January 2010, 08:00 in HSB 3-15. Registration of senior (non-first year) under-graduate BPolSci students.

Please keep strictly to this date/time since no registration will be accepted or assistance provided before/after this date/time. Senior undergraduate students who do not attend this session will, thereafter, not be assisted with their registration by the package organisers (Prof Du Plessis and Mr Henwood). Latecomers have to report directly to and register through Faculty Administration.

BPolSci students (non-first years) may also register electronically through the UP website. Students who register electronically are not required to attend the scheduled registration session. However, should they require the assistance of the package organisers, this assistance will only be provided during the scheduled registration session and not before or after this session.

BAdmin (International Relations) students register in accordance with the instructions of the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences (direct other academic enquiries to the programme manager: Dr Wolmarans).

· Tuesday 26 January 2010. 13:25 in the Roos Hall.

During this session the PTO 111 students will be subdivided into smaller groups and allocated to specific venues. Additional information concerning the presentation of this module will also be provided. Senior students who still have to take (or repeat) PTO 111 must attend this session.

· Wednesday 27 January 2010. Commencement of first semester lectures.

2010 HONOURS STUDENTS

Students who wish to apply for the Honours programme, need a minimum of 65% average in their 3rd year major, e.g. in International Relations or in Political Science. More information is obtainable from the department.

Tuesday 26 January 2010, 17:00 (HSB 21-5). First meeting of Honours students (who have been admitted to the honours programme by the Head of the Political Sciences Department).

2010 MASTERS STUDIES

Students who have completed their Honours degrees and who are interested in pursuing research based Masters studies, need an average of at least 65% for their Honours studies and have to apply for admission. Guidelines on Masters studies and for the preparation of research proposals are obtainable from the secretary’s office (HSB 21-14). Please note that there will not be an intake of students for coursework Masters degrees (e.g. MDIPS & MSS) in 2010.

We trust that you have enjoyed this year and we wish all our students good luck with the end of year exams and a very happy and joyful festive season. We hope to see you back next year.

We hope that you found this newsletter informative and that you enjoyed reading it.

Any contributions to future newsletters or suggestions for improvement are welcome.

Please contact Ms Rentia Pretorius (012 420 2690) or [email protected]

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