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Rockefeller Archive Center;
Wheat is one of the world's most important crops, source of almost a fifth of the world's calories. The Rockefeller Foundation has played a major role in wheat development, through its agricultural program of research, technical assistance, and educational extension. This work began with the foundation's support for the Mexican Agricultural Program in 1943, which later developed into the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT). Over the following two decades, the foundation expanded its wheat program in South America, South Asia, and the Middle East. Yet while a number of scholars have examined the impacts of this work on wheat cultivation in Mexico and South Asia, little scholarship has looked at how this influence spread to the Middle East (with the exception of some work on Turkey.)
This research, driven in partnership by the British Council and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), looks at the reasons why some national governments invest in supporting outward mobility scholarship programmes. The study aims to improve our understanding of why governments sponsor these programmes; how they are designed, administered, and funded; who participates and where they study; and what impact the programmes are having.
The report contains detailed case studies of 11 countries and their approaches to national outward mobility scholarship programmes, with comparative case study analysis and recommendations for countries looking to establish or develop outward mobility scholarship programmes.
Rockefeller Archive Center;
In 1990, feminists and doctors hailed the long-term birth control device, Norplant, as the greatest advancement in birth control technology since the 1960s. By 2002, in response to an avalanche of feminist criticism and over 200 class action lawsuits, Norplant's distributor removed the contraceptive device from the U.S. market. My research, the first historical study of the drug, links the politics of Norplant to the expansion of feminism, the politicization of class action lawsuits, and the rise of neoliberalism in the 1990s.
Women in the Middle East and North Africa region face challenges in their attempts to seek and get justice. Despite some promising legal awareness initiatives, mostly led by civil society, women's knowledge of their rights and family law is limited. They lack social capital and the financial means to claim their rights, and the systems in place to provide financial support are insufficient and often ineffective. Women's pursuit of justice is further limited by entrenched patriarchal values at community and court levels. Though some laws in the countries covered by this research have been positively amended recently, women still face discrimination in the judicial system based on their sex, their religion, and their financial status.
This report was commissioned by Oxfam and civil society organizations in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Yemen to explore the impact of the cost of legal services on women's access to justice in personal status and family law proceedings in the four countries.
Economist Intelligence Unit, The;
Fixing Food is an Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) report on food system sustainability globally, spanning agriculture, nutrition, and food loss and waste. It draws on an interview programme with experts from the academic, public and private sectors and is published alongside the Food Sustainability Index (FSI), a quantitative and qualitative benchmarking model, which ranks 25 countries according to their food system sustainability. The project was developed with the Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition (BCFN).
As Egypt approaches the fifth anniversary of its 2011 uprising, one would be forgiven for assuming that a major challenge to the regime of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi was gathering coherence and force, based upon its panicked and paranoid current actions. But such a conclusion would be misplaced. The regime's overblown fears of a largely neutered opposition raise a pertinent question: What is driving the Egyptian security establishment's overbroad and suffocating repression?
The run-up to January 25 has seen a major crackdown that has included arrests, disappearances, random searches (including random surveillance of social media accounts), the shuttering of nonpolitical cultural fora, such as art galleries, and a heightening of visa monitoring for foreigners. For this upcoming symbolic date, the regime will not be caught unaware and flat-footed -- it believes that the mistakes of 2011 will not be repeated any time soon.
Speaking to Reuters, an official at Egypt's Homeland Security Agency explained the state's motivations for the crackdown quite bluntly, stating that "We have taken several measures to ensure activists don't have breathing space and are unable to gather, and several cafes and other meeting places have been closed, while some have been arrested in order to scare the rest."
Whereas late 2010 was marked by creeping dissatisfaction, increasing boldness, and stepped-up organizational efforts among opposition actors, there are no corollaries in today's Egypt. While the government continues to fare poorly in terms of overall performance, political life is stunted by fear and fragmentation, and there are few avenues that allow for the amplification of dissatisfaction into a broad-based challenge to the regime. Opposition forces are fragmented and intimidated, while the regime, the state, and social elites retain a baseline of cohesion, and domestic and regional instability have produced quiescence in some sectors of society.
It is clear that 2016 will not be the year of the next Egyptian uprising, let alone revolution. Yet, despite indications that, for the time being, the regime is safe from any popular threat, it is behaving as if it faces an imminent challenge. Its actions reveal a deeply ingrained worldview in which even minor forms of dissent and nonconformity are no longer permissible.
This report explores how mobile services provided by Vodafone and the Vodafone Foundation are enabling women to seize new opportunities and improve their lives. Accenture Sustainability Services were commissioned to conduct research on the services and to assess their potential social and economic impact if they were widely available across Vodafone's markets by 2020.
It showcases the projects and the work of those involved and also poses the question -- what would the benefit to women and to society at large be if projects such as these were taken to scale and achieved an industrialscale of growth? This reflects the Foundation's commitment not solely to the development of pilots but rather the Trustees' ambition to see projects which lead to transformational change.
In order to understand this more deeply, the Report looks at the benefits for women and society and providessome financial modelling for how the engagement of commercial players could achieve industrial, sustainable growth in these areas. Accenture has provided the modelling and, given the public benefit and understanding which the report seeks to generate, these are shared openly for all in the mobile industry to understand and share. It is the Trustees' hope that the collaboration with Oxford University and Accenture in the delivery of this Report will stimulate not only the expansion of existing charitable programmes but will also seed other philanthropic, social enterprise or commercial initiatives.
Global Alliance for Community Philanthropy;
What makes the global spread of community philanthropy organizations so exciting is the variety of forms they take, adaptations to different local contexts, challenges, resources, and leaders. The core similarities matter -- all in some way help geographic communities mobilize financial and other kinds of capital for improvement of the lives of residents. But so do the differences. Some have endowments, some don't. Some are large, more are small. Some call themselves community foundations, others do not. This diversity is one sign of community philanthropy's flexibility, potential, and rising popularity.
But it also presents a challenge to those who want to better understand and support community philanthropy, especially on a global level. A practice so varied, so organic and tied to local conditions, complicates classification, resists general conclusions, and calls for lots of learning through example. A movement relatively young and quickly evolving, with a limited body of applied research, requires ongoing documentation and study.
The case studies presented here provide intriguing snapshots of locally driven development in communities across the globe.
The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.
Egypt has a young population, high rates of unemployment and inflation, and a long history of state control over the media. In this mix, the rise of digital media has been widely considered an engine of radical social and political change, not least in respect of the popular uprisings that led to the January 25 revolution in 2011.
This report suggests that new technologies of communication have had an enabling rather than a determining effect. They have acted as a catalyst to facilitate and accelerate social change already happening on the ground for years. Crucially, these technologies gave unprecedented opportunities for lateral communication and self-expression outside the regime's control.
Moreover, the half a million Egyptians who clicked "I am attending the revolution" on Facebook gave each other the feeling that "I am not alone. If I go out on the streets on January 25, I am not going to be with 200 people; I am going to be with thousands, or as it happened, with millions."
This report offers a detailed analysis of digitization that chronicles both what has and has not changed in Egypt against a backdrop of unprecedented political and social instability, and the ongoing struggle for democracy.
Civil society is increasingly coming under assault around the world, as authoritarian governments grow more bold and sophisticated in stifling independent groups that monitor elections, expose corruption, or otherwise give citizens a voice in how they are governed. In response, senior U.S. officials have reaffirmed their support for universal rights, including freedom of association, while mid-level officials have criticized specific abuses against civil society. However, only modest U.S. government efforts have dealt systematically with the global nature of the crackdown on civil society. This weak U.S. response to the crackdown hurts U.S. interests and undermines U.S. credibility abroad. The U.S. government needs to respond to the threats against civil society more forcefully.
To curb the global crackdown, the United States needs to systematically oppose efforts by authoritarian governments to control civic space, take vigorous political and diplomatic measures to support civil society organizations that come under threat, and get around government restrictions designed to isolate local organizations from the international community. Effective U.S. policy to defend civil society needs to respond comprehensively to the global nature of the crackdown and, at the same time, turn the tide in key countries where repression of civil society has significant regional repercussions. While bipartisan collaboration is critical to make such policy effective, a strong U.S. response to the global crackdown on civil society must begin in the White House.
John D. Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Civic Engagement at The American Univerity in Cairo;
Taking stock of recent developments in the field of philanthropy concerning the theme of Art for Social Change, this paper shall analyze the new cultural and artistic trends in civic participation and social engagement in Egypt that take their root well before the revolution and could be further emphasized following the Uprisings. The focus will be on new philanthropic orientations fostering community based cultural expressions rather than 'elitist' art forms or already recognized performing artists (concerts, opera, and blockbuster films).
John D. Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Civic Engagement at The American Univerity in Cairo;
This study explores the gap between the expectations and aspirations of young people in light of revolutionary promises made in 2011-12 on the one hand, and their actual experiences on the other. It analyses youth perceptions towards sociopolitical changes happening in their environment over a period of eight months (May-December 2012) in three key countries of the Arab transition: Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. In addition to making a contribution to existing literature on Arab youth and to its vocabulary, this study seeks to provide key stakeholders with up-to-date information on the extent to which youth aspirations are being met and on how development activities can better meet the needs of young people at such a turning point in the history of the region.