World Affairs (news & politics)

South Sudan is the world’s youngest nation. Tragically, the euphoria of liberation following its independence in 2011 was soon undermined by deep-seated political, ethnic and geographical tensions. For the past 3 years, this power struggle has played out as a full-scale civil war in the country. Over 2 million South Sudanese are internally displaced, and over half of its 11 million population is facing famine.

This discussion reflects on important questions facing South Sudan 5 years after gaining its independence. Is there hope for peace and stability in South Sudan? What role will the international community play in bridging ethnic tensions in the country? What is the future for the UN South Sudanese peacekeeping mission that is opposed by the very government it aims to support? Can the UN impose peace on a reluctant nation? What is the role of youth and the diaspora in paving the way to sustainable peace?

Valentino Achak Deng, prominent South Sudanese advocate, will be joined by acclaimed author Dave Eggers in a conversation on these important issues.

As a boy, Valentino fled Sudan during its civil war and spent nine years as a refugee in Ethiopia and Kenya before eventually resettling in Atlanta. In collaboration with author Dave Eggers, his experience was memorialized in the acclaimed novel, "What Is the What."

Valentino Achak Deng, Co-founder, Valentino Achak Deng Foundation, speaks with author Dave Eggers.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/events/event/1642

Direct download: 09_28_16_South_Sudan.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 3:01pm PDT

ISIS surged to international prominence following its audacious prison camp raids in 2013 in Iraq, freeing more than 500 Iraqi insurgents. ISIS has since carried out increasingly bold attacks in Syria and beyond, cementing its reputation as a group more violent and ruthless than any that came before it. No longer an insurgency, ISIS’ focus is to establish its own rule on conquered territory, and declare a worldwide caliphate. Of course the roots of ISIS trace deeper, and are much more intertwined with the interventions of the West than they first appear.

Today’s ISIS jihadists are the "children of Zarqawi," General Michael Flynn would later warn Congress, referring to Abu Musab Zarqawi, the once-obscure jihadist who led Al Qaeda in Iraq and laid ISIS’ philosophical foundations. How did Abu Musab Zarqawi, a “small-time thug,” rise to such world-changing prominence? How did ISIS emerge so forcefully from the chaos, and power struggles, of competing jihadist groups? Did the efforts of the West to crack down on Al Qaeda, inadvertently fuel the growth of ISIS ten years later?

Pulitzer Prize winner Joby Warrick, a reporter with The Washington Post since 1996, will address these issues in a conversation at World Affairs about the birth of ISIS. His latest book, “Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS,” pursues a thoughtful reflection on the origins the most notorious terror group in the world today.

As part of our "Engage" series, this event features a post-discussion Q&A, when you will have the chance to participate directly with the speaker and gain incredible insights that you won't get anywhere else.

Speaker Joby Warrick is Author and Reporter at The Washington Post.

The conversation is moderated by Kori Schake, Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/events/event/1636

Direct download: 09_15_16_Joby_Warrick.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 7:24am PDT

The frequency of epidemics is increasing, driven by surging populations, environmental change and globalized trade and travel. The SARS, pandemic influenza, MERS, Ebola and Zika virus outbreaks illustrate that the world is ill-prepared to deal with a large-scale viral pandemic. Experts have so far identified only a tiny proportion of viral threats, and few of these viruses have had vaccines or other counter-measures developed. Over the coming century we will witness spillover from a pool of over one million "unknown" viruses into human populations. The Global Virome Project is a global initiative to identify and characterize every significant viral threat circulating in the world. Only by identifying these potential threats can the world begin to prepare for the next great outbreak. In conversation with Jonna Mazet, Dennis Carroll and Nathan Wolfe, three experts from the Global Virome Project, this program will explore the extent of the viral threat to human populations and what can be done to stop it.

The panel features:

Dennis Carroll, Director, Global Health Security and Development Unit, US Agency for International Development (USAID), Jonna Mazet, Executive Director, One Health Institute, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, and Nathan Wolfe, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Metabiota.

The conversation is moderated by Larry Brilliant, Chair, Skoll Global Threats Fund.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/event-calendar/event/1629

Direct download: 07_20_16_Global_Virome.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 7:40am PDT

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), in 2014 there were nearly 60 million refugees and IDPs worldwide — the highest number since World War II. What is the social sector’s role in meeting the immediate needs of the most vulnerable while at the same time, creating long-term strategies for ensuring the security and well-being of those forced to flee their homes?

JEANNE BOURGAULT CEO, Internews @InternewsJeanne

DEOGRATIAS NIYIZONKIZA Founder and CEO, Village Health Works @VHW

AMY RAO Founder and CEO, Integrated Archive Systems @11thhourproject

MODERATOR: SASHA CHANOFF Founder and Executive Director, RefugePoint @sashachanoff

For more information about this conference please visit: https://philanthropyforum.org/conference/gpf-2016/

Direct download: 04_05_16_Meeting_Immediate_Needs.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 7:16am PDT

When President George W. Bush declared the war on terror after September 11, 2001, the United States was plunged into a global conflict with no clear objectives. Today, nearly fifteen years later, there is still no end in sight. In addition to the war’s original enemy, Al Qaeda, the US is in conflict with other jihadist and terrorist organizations, including ISIS. What has the investment of resources by the United States and its allies achieved in this ever widening conflict? Why has the United States, the most formidable military force in the world, so far failed to defeat its enemies? What freedoms have Americans sacrificed in the name of this endless war? Join World Affairs and Mark Danner, author of “Spiral: Trapped in the Forever War,” for a conversation about how the United States found itself on a “permanent war footing” and what that means for our role in the world.

Speaker Mark Danner is a Former Staff Writer at The New Yorker, and Professor at the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley.

Nancy A. Jarvis, Attorney, Farrand Cooper, P.C., moderates the discussion.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/media-library/event/1628

Direct download: 07_28_16_Mark_Danner.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 5:36am PDT

Over the past fifteen years, the demand for humanitarian aid has increased dramatically. The world currently spends $25 billion to provide assistance to 125 million people, and according to a UN High-Level Panel on Humanitarian Financing, another $15 billion is required to adequately meet the needs of those affected by violent conflict, natural disaster, demographic shifts and rapid urbanization, among other circumstances. As a result, the humanitarian sector is undergoing a period of self-reflection with the first-ever World Humanitarian Summit to be held in Istanbul, Turkey in May 2016. What has been learned and where is the sector heading? What is the role of public, private and social sector actors in filling the gaps in aid? And what is the unique role of philanthropy in both addressing the root causes of humanitarian crises and increasing the pool of available resources?

GUY CAVE Managing Director, Geneva Global @GuyCave2

HADEEL IBRAHIM Executive Director, Mo Ibrahim Foundation @Mo_IbrahimFdn

LONA STOLL Acting Deputy Director for the Global Development Lab at USAID @lonastoll

MODERATOR: PETER LAUGHARN President and CEO, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation @peter_laugharn

For more information about this conference please visit: https://philanthropyforum.org/conference/gpf-2016/

Direct download: 04_04_16_GPF_Filling_the_Gaps.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 8:00pm PDT

People in fast growing economies are experiencing social and economic mobility for the first time, joining the middle class. Producers and makers are finding new markets for their commodities or wares, entrepreneurs are better able to access capital and customers, and job seekers are better able to connect with potential employers. Networks and knowledge are not only enabling economic growth and opportunity, but they are changing the very nature of work. Yet the “jobs challenge” remains so long as there is a short supply of the skills required for the jobs that await. What models exist for closing the skills gap? Moreover, how might employers better signal the skills they seek, and job seekers convey the skills they’ve attained, sometimes in non-traditional ways? How might each leverage networks to connect to one another?

KARAN CHOPRA Co-founder and Partner, Opportunity@Work @karchopra

JOSHUA OIGARA CEO, KCB Group @JoshuaOigara

SHAI RESHEF President and Founder, University of the People @ShaiReshef

MODERATOR: AN-ME CHUNG, Director of Strategic Partnerships, Mozilla Foundation @anmechung

For more information about this conference please visit: https://philanthropyforum.org/conference/gpf-2016/

Direct download: 04_08_16_GPF_The_Jobs_Challenge.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 10:57am PDT

The adoption of the Paris climate agreement in December 2015 sent a powerful signal about the global consensus over the urgent need to address climate change. Although the agreement was more ambitious than expected, it is still not enough. Now the world must continue to embrace the spirit of Paris and race towards not only implementation of the agreement, but also increasingly bold ideas for the future. One country whose very existence depends on this is the low-lying Marshall Islands, a tiny atoll nation located in the middle of the Pacific. The Marshall Islands spearheaded the 'High Ambition Coalition' of countries that has been credited with securing the most ambitious elements of the Paris agreement.

Former British diplomat Carne Ross is the Founder and Executive Director of Independent Diplomat - the world's first non-profit diplomatic advisory group - which has worked closely with the Republic of the Marshall Islands in the years leading up to Paris and now on its role with the High Ambition Coalition. Independent Diplomat helps to level the diplomatic playing field between the world's richest countries, which are often the most egregious polluters, and states like the Marshall Islands, which are both the world's most vulnerable states to the devastating effects of climate change and among the least likely to be heard at international negotiations.

How did a country of only 60,000 people become one of the most influential states at the UN climate talks? What's next for climate diplomacy and the High Ambition Coalition? What lessons can the success of the Paris Agreement teach us about global diplomacy more broadly? How can private and non-profit organizations like Independent Diplomat influence international relations, peace and world security? Join World Affairs and Carne Ross for a conversation that will answer these and other pressing questions about the global solutions to climate change.

Speaker Carne Ross is Executive Director of Independent Diplomat.

Aimee Barnes, Partner, Allotrope Partners, moderates the conversation.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/events/event/1617

Direct download: 06_29_16_Carne_Ross.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 8:00pm PDT

How are international war criminals brought to justice? Since the Nuremberg trials following World War II, international bodies like the International Criminal Court (ICC) have fought to prosecute war criminals for egregious abuses of human rights. From South America to Russia and from Rwanda to Kosovo, scores of war criminals have been prosecuted for their misdeeds. But how can war criminals be held accountable if they can't be found? What happens when alleged war criminals or terrorists are being shielded from prosecution by states? How has human rights prosecution evolved since the early days of the ICC? Join us for a discussion with human rights experts Eric Stover, Alexa Koenig and Victor Peskin about the evolution of war crimes prosecution and what still needs to be done to protect victims of human rights abuses.

Speakers include: Alexa Koenig, Executive Director, Human Rights Center, Berkeley Law, University of California, Victor Peskin, Associate Professor, School of Politics and Global Studies, Arizona State University, and Eric Stover, Faculty Director, Human Rights Center, University of California Berkeley.

Rebecca Westerfield, Founding Member and Former Director, Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services (JAMS), moderates the discussion.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/event-calendar/event/1598

Direct download: 05_26_16_Justice_Unjust_World.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 8:00pm PDT

China and India have proven themselves indispensable in the first decade of the twenty-first century, which has been a remarkable period of economic growth and increased connectivity for both countries. Policy initiatives like the US Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) that promote trade in these emerging markets provide exciting new opportunities for entrepreneurs around the globe to expand and develop their businesses and connect with potential consumers. However, in an increasingly competitive global marketplace, can the US continue to lead in both the political and economic spheres? How should the US engage with India and China in the future? Join World Affairs for a conversation with Anja Manuel, co-founder and principal of RiceHadleyGates, LLC, who will offer insights into how the US should work with China and India to face the twenty-first century's global challenges.

Speaker Anja Manuel is Co-Founder and Principal at RiceHadleyGates LLC.

Jane Wales, CEO, World Affairs Council and Global Philanthropy Forum and Vice President, The Aspen Institute, moderates the discussion.

For more information about this event please visit: http://www.worldaffairs.org/event-calendar/event/1615

Direct download: 06_15_16_Anja_Manuel.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 8:00pm PDT