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Invitation: “Fringe Regionalism – When Peripheries Become Regions” 27 February 2019

The Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn) and the Department of Political Sciences are delighted to invite you to a conversation on Fringe Regionalism – When Peripheries Become Regions. The conversation will be facilitated by the author and GovInn research fellow Dr Frank Matthies.  

Date: Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Time: 13:00 – 14:00

Venue: Old College House Room 1-09, University of Pretoria

Queries: kirsty.agnew@up.ac.za

27-February-2019_Frank-Mattheis-Book-Launch

BOOK ‘Interregionalism across the Atlantic Space’, eds by Frank Mattheis and Andréas Godsäter

GovInn’s Senior Researcher  Frank Mattheis and Associate Fellow Andréas Godsäter published the book ‘Interregionalism across the Atlantic Space‘ in the United Nations University Series on Regionalism at Springer.

This book focuses on interregional relations across the Atlantic and the possible evolution of a new, distinctive Atlantic space for international relations. It provides a comprehensive insight into the overlapping linkages of interregionalism in the wider Atlantic space. Additionally, it raises the question of relevance, currently the main question in this field of research: Is interregionalism important because it brings about something new that really matters or is it simply a (perhaps unavoidable) by-product of regionalism? The book conducts an analysis of six interregional relations criss-crossing the Atlantic space, accounting for the multitude of interregional connections within a potential Atlantic macro region and analysing the differences, conflicts and convergences between regional organizations. It engages with the issue of agency in interregional relations, and argues that interregional processes and agendas are always driven and constructed by certain actors for certain purposes.

Read the full book here: http://www.springer.com/gb/book/9783319629070

 

Book review ‘Region-building in Africa: Political and economic challenges’, by Frank Mattheis, 14.08.2017

GovInn’s Senior Researcher Frank Mattheis published the book review ‘Region-building in Africa: Political and economic challenges‘, edited by Daniel H. Levine and Dawn Nagar, in the South African Journal of International Affairs.

Since its political independence, Africa has been rife with projects to achieve regional and continental integration. Every decade has seen dozens of new regional acronyms being created, from specialised agencies to all-encompassing institutions. The question as to what this plethora of organisations has achieved is thus as relevant as ever, and Levine and Nagar have attempted to address it with the edited volume Region-building in Africa: Political and economic challenges. The book is substantial and constitutes a relevant reference point for the pan-African intel ligentsia dealing with regionalism. Nineteen renowned authors provide contributions although, from the outset, it is striking that most are not based in Africa and only four are women (two of them providing chapters on non-African regions).

Read the full review here: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10220461.2017.1361862

Repositioning Europe in the study of regions: comparative regionalism, interregionalism and decentred regionalism by Frank Mattheis

GovInn’s Senior Researcher Frank Mattheis published the article ‘Repositioning Europe in the study of regions: comparative regionalism, interregionalism and decentred regionalism‘ in the Journal of European Integration.

The constitution of European Union (EU) studies has long been an exclusionary process, both dealing extensively with internal debates and arguing for an own discipline within or even next to political sciences and international relations. Due to the self-centredness on the vivid development of the EU, other regions were largely disregarded when it came to theory building or only taken into account later as comparators.

 

Read the full article here: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07036337.2017.1317985

Book discussion: “The New Politics of Regionalism” and “Post Western World”

On Friday, 3 February the Center for the Study of Governance Innovation hosted roundtable discussion to promote two recently released books, one edited volume by GovInn’s Dr Frank Mattheis and the other by visiting scholar Dr Oliver Stuenkel, Associate Professor of International Relations at the Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) in São Paulo. The discussion was moderated by University of Pretoria Department of Political Sciences lecturer Ms Sithembile Mbete and received presentations by Dr Mattheis on his edited volume, “The New Politics of Regionalism: Perspectives from Africa, Latin America and Asia-Pacific” (Routledge) and Dr Stuenkel on his book, “Post Western World” (Polity) before engaging with guests in an open table discussion.

 

 

 

Book Discussion: “The Rise of New Powers in Global and Regional Politics?”

The Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn) and the Department of Political Sciences at the University of Pretoria invite you to join us on Friday 3 February for a discussion on the changing landscape of international relations with Professor Oliver Stuenkel (Getulio Vargas Foundation) and Dr Frank Mattheis (GovInn) who have both recently released books on the topic. The session will be moderated by Department of Political Sciences lecturer Sithembile Mbete.

In this provocative book Post-Western World: How Emerging Powers Are Remaking Global Order (Polity, 2016), Oliver Stuenkel argues that our understanding of global order and predictions about its future are limited because we seek to imagine the post-Western world from a parochial Western-centric perspective. Such a view is increasingly inadequate in a world where billions of people regard Western rule as a temporary aberration, and the rise of Asia as a return to normalcy.

The volume The New Politics of Regionalism. Perspectives from Africa, Latin America and Asia-Pacific (Routledge, 2017), edited by Ulf Engel, Heidrun Zinecker, Frank Mattheis, Antje Dietze and Thomas Plötze, brings together innovative contributions that focus on the role of regional actors and the making and interplay of regionalisms in the processes of reshaping social spaces within an evolving global order. Analysing these new regionalisms from the perspective of the Global South, the contributions in the volume departs from state-centred perspectives and focusing on the transformations and constructions of regionalisms across varying spatial dimensions.

 

Oliver Stuenkel is an Associate Professor of International Relations at the Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) in São Paulo.

Frank Mattheis is a Senior Researcher at the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn) at the University of Pretoria.

Sithembile Mbete is a Lecturer in the Department of Political Sciences at the University of Pretoria.

 

Date: Friday, 3 February 2017

Time: 14h00 – 16h00

Venue: GovInn Headquarters, Old College House, University of Pretoria Main Campus (Hatfield)

RSVP: https://goo.gl/forms/jDSDyqOAI4pXObv63

Queries: info@governanceinnovation.org

 

More information on these books:

http://www.postwesternworld.com/2016/04/30/western-available-amazon/

https://www.routledge.com/p/book/9781138200883

 

Book-discussion-invite-A-Changing-Global-Order-–-Perspectives-from-the-South-FINAL.docx

The New Politics of Regionalism

Book Cover

Book Cover: The New Politics of Regionalism

On 14 December, GovInn senior researcher Frank Mattheis will participate in the launch of the book “The New Politics of Regionalisms” at the Centre for Area Studies at the University of Leipzig (Germany). He co-edited book, which was published in October 2016 by Routledge, with Ulf Engel, Heidrun Zinecker, Antje Dietze and Thomas Plötze, and contributed to several chapters in the volume. Jon Schubert, postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Leipzig, will act as discussant for the evening.

Since the end of the Cold War, different forms of territorialization have emerged and we are confronted with an increasing number and variety of actors that are establishing regional projects. How can the study of the emergence and transformation of regionalisms and of different forms of territorialization aid in understanding the dynamics of this post-Cold War world order? This edited volume brings together innovative contributions to the study of this new complexity. It focuses on the role of regional actors, and the making and interplay of regionalisms in the processes of reshaping social spaces within an evolving global order. Analysing these new regionalisms from the perspective of the Global South, the contributions in the volume highlight the struggles that take place between a variety of actors, departing from state-centred perspectives and focusing on the transformations and constructions of regionalisms across varying spatial dimensions.

Organized into three sections, the volume attempts to identify the specific conditions and junctures of different forms of region-making in their external (global) and internal (local /national) dimensions. The volume also places special emphasis on interactions, spatial entanglements and comparisons between regionalisms in different parts of the world. By expanding beyond the perspective of North-South transfers, this book seeks to better understand the dynamics and diversity of interregional interactions. The first section looks at the purposes and logics behind regionalisms beyond their declared objectives, followed by a section on the dynamic relations between regionalisms, going beyond a European Union perspective. The final part looks at the place actors have other than states in the making of regionalisms. Throughout the volume, cases and empirical studies from Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa as well as Southeast Asia and the Southwest Pacific support these sections and challenge established notions of regionalism by going beyond a Eurocentric approach.

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Conference Report: “Comparative Regionalism: State of the Art and Future Directions”

Conference Participants

Participants of the Comparative Regionalism Conference

During the first week of November, the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn) had the honour to host a conference on comparative regionalism in partnership with the Research College (KFG) “The Transformative Power of Europe” at the Free University Berlin.

KFG-directors Prof. Tanja Börzel and Prof. Thomas Risse together with GovInn director Prof. Lorenzo Fioramonti and senior research fellow Dr. Frank Mattheis combined forces to bring together authors of the recently published Oxford Handbook of Comparative Regionalism with experts in Africa. After two similar events of the KFG in Singapore and Rio de Janeiro, Pretoria constituted to third and last stop for the authors to engage in a global dialogue.

GovInn invited colleagues from various South African universities with a track record in studying regionalism but also African experts with practical experience in supporting regional integration. The different panels addressed regionalism from a variety of angles by looking at specific governance issues (e.g. the politics of regional migration), geographic specificities (e.g. what makes regionalism in Africa distinct?) and the broader connections between regionalism across the globe (e.g. how do interregional diffusion processes work?). The debates touched on a broad variety of issues of central relevance to Africa, including the gap between formal regional organisations and regionalising actors on the ground.

The debates were also informed by the current higher education crisis in South Africa. The roundtables witnessed debates about ways to address Eurocentrism in the study of regionalism, not by provincialising regionalisms but by combining the production of regional knowledge with a dialogue between sub-disciplines and theories.

Prof. Risse in action

Prof. Risse in action

GovInn and the KFG turned out to be well placed to congregate scholars from the wider field of comparative regionalism so as to collectively engage with crossing the boundaries of their disciplines and regions. Yet, as discussed in the closing roundtable, the eclecticism produces new challenges for methodological rigour, funding schemes and selection criteria of academic journals. The momentum generated by the growing number of scholars interested in the study of comparative regionalism generates many new questions and challenges for the field to take into account as it further institutionalises in research programmes and state of the art.

Conference Programme “Comparative Regionalism”

Call for applicants to the GEM-STONES PhD fellowships 2016

The European Joint Doctorate on Globalisation, Europe and Multilateralism- Sophistication of the Transnational Order, Networks, and European Strategies (GEM-STONES) is awarding up to 15 full-time 3-year PhD Fellowships dealing with the EU’s capacity to provide purposeful complex regime management on a global scale. In regional studies an open call is extended to graduates for a PhD position in International Relations and Comparative Regionalism in three programs, “Comparing Responsibility to Protect Diffusion in Regional Organisations: The EU, ECOWAS, UNASUR and the ASEAN Regional Forum”, “Comparing Overlapping Regional Security Institutions and the role of the European Union’s External Action ” and “Comparing Competing forms of Regionalism and their Impact on Regionalism”.

The deadline for applications is the 15th September 2016. Follow the links for further information regarding the fellowships available as well as application procedures and contact information. For more information on the other GEM-STONES fellowships on offer see their web page here.

 

 

TRAFO blogpost

‘New metres for a wider world’ – Frank Mattheis on interregionalism and Global International Relations

TRAFO blogpost

China and the Africa Union – an entanglement between interregional and regional dynamics (photo credit: Antonia Witt).

The Blog for Transnational Research (TRAFO) has recently launched the publication of a blog series dedicated to the theme ‘Doing Global International Relations‘. GovInn’s Senior Researcher Frank Mattheis contributed the fourth blogpost to the series: New metres for a wider world: interregionalism and Global International Relations.

“Imagining new concepts, using new delineations, and experimenting with new measurements are ways to enter in dialogue with the global world so as to try to understand its essence. Are we ready to change a discipline and our own research, once we realise that the world is not the one our categories painted?”

Read the entire blogpost on the TRAFO website. More contributions to the series will be published on a weekly basis.

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