Brief Policy

Research and write a policy brief on a topic of your choice according to the following criteria:

1) Select first a country (you cannot pick the US or China), and secondly an international organization IO, or NGO (aid, development, environmental, indigenous peoples, etc.), or a transnational corporation.

2) Analyze the interaction of your two chosen actors. There are many different analytical angles that qualify for your paper. For example, the focus can either be on how an international organization works in a particular country, or how a particular country is trying to shape policies of a particular IO. Come talk to me if you are not sure if your idea works.

Policy brief: Imagine you are writing this note for a superior who needs to get a very quick and basic overview of the issue but does know little to nothing about it.

Structure of your essay (note that this will likely vary depending on what exactly you are doing!)

1) Executive summary: Say which two actors you look at and give key findings (150 words).

2) Brief introduction of the topic/description of the problem the two actors interact on. This will NOT be the main part of your paper, do not get lost in a long description of a problem or a country’s situation.

Quickly move to the analysis! (200- 300 words).

– What is your organization doing, what does the interaction between the two actors involve, how has it evolved? This will be the main part of your paper! Be analytical, not descriptive. (800-1000 words)

– Concluding analysis: how successful has the cooperation/interaction been, what kind of problems may have emerged, what policy lessons can be learned (if any), what could be done better, etc.? (300-400 words).

Total length, titel page and references included: 1500 to 2000 words.

Requirement for source material:

1) you need at least one primary source document from the international organization. (A primary source is a document published by the organization itself, such as programmatic or strategic policy documents. See links below that can take you to source material available through some of the IOs)

2) at least 6 more sources of information, of which:

– at least 1 scholarly source, (either book or academic article for general background NOT listed in syllabus);

– at least 1 source from the required reading listed in syllabus; – newspaper articles (use major national or international newspapers), reports/analysis from think tanks or NGOs;

– one source can be self-presentation by actor (website, press releases).

Submission: submit either a WORD (preferred) or PDF file.

You will be graded on:

– Topical fit with essay prompt here. Stick to something that fits well with this prompt.

– Analytical depth (ability to critically analyze and reflect on your source material): analyze, don’t just describe!

– Organization: provide a clear structure and narrative for your policy brief. – Quality of your reference material: An url-link found somewhere on the Internet is NOT a proper or necessarily credible source. For any reference used you must be able to identify the author, title, publication date. For Internet resources, add the date you accessed the material.

– Clarity of writing and grammar!!! Avoid repetition and long complicated sentences. Avoid spelling errors any program will capture.

– Proper referencing (see page 3 for one way to do this). Do NOT use footnotes.

IMPORTANT: by submitting your policy brief online you attest that it is the result of your own research and was written by yourself. See academic integrity policy on page 4. You may of course – in fact are encouraged – have someone read your work and make editing suggestions to your essay before you submit it, particularly if you are not a native English speaker. But the research and writing needs to be your own. We will invite selected students to come discuss their essay with us at the very end. UCSB/GLOB172 October 18, 2020 Clémençon Please read the following carefully before you come talk to me about your topic: You can link practically any country with any of the International Organizations or NGOs. However, some topics or combinations will be easier to do than others, given the access to primary material you need. Easier: Involvement of the World Bank or the United Nations Development Program in a particular developing country. It is easy to find documents on country strategies and specific programs and projects they are funding in these countries through the World Bank or UNDP sites. Both also let you access evaluation documents that assess the extent to which past interventions have reach their objectives and how they fit into the larger development strategies. For example, what have the objectives of WB or UNDP programs been in Sierra Leon, Niger, Gambia, Bangladesh, Hondura, Indonesia, and so on. Find a country you are interested in, and check the links provided below. Such a paper would be more technical than some of the following topics. Special UN agencies: World Health Organization (WHO), Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), International Labor Organization, OECD, others. Pick any of the UN agencies that allow you to access primary material that details their projects and programs in specific countries. It will often be more difficult, however, to find independent secondary material to supplement any official documents you may find. In such cases, I strongly suggest you find some other topic. Less straight forward: IMF and World Trade Organization: IMF structural adjustment loans come with a host of conditions a country needs to follow. Often countries in fiscal trouble receive several loans over a period of time. You could focus on just one particular recent intervention or consider the overall relationship over some time. The primary information can be found on the IMF website, including some evaluations of past interventions. It may take a bit more time to navigate the site, then if you look for country strategies in the case of the World Bank. You would then need to work with secondary analysis about the success or failure of IMF programs. Depending on the country – famous cases are Argentina, Mexico, Indonesia, Poland, Iceland, etc. – there will be some academic writing on it. World Trade Organization: look for particular trade disputes that have involved particular countries and have generated WTO dispute settlement procedures. You CANNOT pick cases brought by either the US or China against other countries, but you are free to pick cases brought by other countries against US or China. You can search primary WTO documents by case, and you should be able to find both academic and newspaper articles for independent analysis. IMF and WTO topics involve technical aspects but often are very political in nature. Non-Governmental Organizations: You can pick a large NGO and see how it has worked in a particular country and/or how it has coordinated its work with IOs, like UNDP and World Bank. Transnational corporations: the interaction between a country and a transnational corporation could possibly be an interesting topic, but falls a bit outside of the framework for a policy brief. It would require you to be able to find official country documents that detail the arrangements for example for a big oil company to become active in the country. In most cases, such arrangements may run through or involve an international organization, particularly the World Bank. More difficult: UN Security Council or work in the UNGA. For UNSC you would need to look at a countries voting record and how it tries to push certain issues through its diplomatic efforts. You would work with SC documents and official country resources (often countries have websites devoted to their activities in the UN). Use secondary material, academic writing, national newspaper accounts, of what the country is doing. Again, you CANNOT pick US or China. Some examples: – World Bank or UNDP programs in country X. Pick at least three different projects or assess overall program. – World Trade Organization and trade dispute initiated by a specific country or group of countries – IMF (bailout and structural adjustment). Some cases were very successful, some less so. – Doctors’ Without Borders, OXFAM etc. and UN (how an NGO works with the UN on humanitarian issues) – WWF and Global Environment Facility (GEF) (NGO contracting with GEF as executing agency) – Google, ExonMobil and the UNDP – Pharma Industry and Word Trade Organization – Nigeria and Shell Oil (how oil company interacts with a country or vice versa) – Your idea! Come discuss it with me if you are unsure AFTER you have read the prompt carefully. UCSB/GLOB172 October 18, 2020 Clémençon Links to primary source material: (there are others, see also links listed in course overheads): United Nations Security Council: UNDP :, UNDP Project Database: UNDP evaluation products: World Bank Country Strategies: World Bank Project Database: World Bank Evaluations: IMF: IMF country information: WTO: GEF (Global Environment Facility) works through other agencies like World Bank, UNDP, regional development banks and others. It has a good project database: Citation Guidelines: There are several citation guides out there. One of the most widely used citation style in the social sciences is from the American Psychological Association (APA): Footnotes and endnotes: DO NOT use footnotes or endnotes for references! In rare cases you may use a footnote to provide more background information or explain a concept. Cite references in the text as the following examples show: – Empirical data on consumer responses to environmental taxes are scarce (Ekins and Speck, 1998). – However, Goulder et al. (1999) pointed out that …. – In the late 1990s, the World Bank changed its policy on corruption (Gutner, 2017). – “For direct citations page numbers need to be added to the reference” (Ekins and Speck, 1998, p. 14). – NGOs like Greenpeace support this (Greenpeace, 2007). – Mozambique is dealing with a severe drought (“As Mozambique’s Rivers dry up,” 2016) Provide full bibliographical reference of your citations at the end of the policy brief (Bibliography): Ekins, Peter and Susan Speck. (1998). Database on environmental taxes in EU. Final Report, Brussels: European Commission. Goulder, Leonard, Stephen Schneider, Marc Boulding and Ivo Speck. (1999). “Technology and CO2 policies.” Resource and Energy Economics 21 (3–4), 211–253. Gutner, Tamara. 2017. International Organizations in World Politics. Los Angeles: SAGE / CQ Press. Greenpeace. 2007., accessed April 20, 2007. A newspaper article is properly cited with the first words of the title, or the authors name: As Mozambique’s Rivers dry up, the hopes of a harvest evaporate too. (2016, February 17). The Guardian. Retrieved from Citing a lecture: you can reference lectures in your text but you do not need to add it to the bibliography. Such as: The IMF has pushed structural adjustment programs with often devastating effects on national economies, such as in Jamaica (Lecture Clémençon, Oct. 9, 2020). But make sure you find sufficient source material.