Policy Briefs

Policy briefs develop information and analysis, followed by recommendations, on policy-oriented topics. They are found useful by policy makers, policy specialists, the media and interested scholars.

Improving Access to Food in Sub-Saharan Africa: Using the Diffusion of Agroecological Information to Mitigate Climate Change Effects

November 13, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 21
Suhani Bhushan and Stephanie C. Fauquier
Sub-Saharan African smallholder farmers face numerous agricultural obstacles — such as climate change and the environment, corporate commodification of food and unpredictable political environments — and farmers are finding it difficult to sustain agricultural livelihoods and output. The international community currently approaches these obstacles through biotechnology, a temporary solution that contributes to the overarching issues of food security.

A Call to the Conference of the New England Governors and Eastern Canada Premiers for Bilateral Energy Governance

November 13, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 20
Andrew Adams, Lyne Maheu, and Kieran McDougal
Launched in 2009, the Northern Pass Transmission Project is meant to carry electricity from Quebec to the New England grid by way of New Hampshire. The project is in a political deadlock, however, because alternative methods have not been investigated and New Hampshire bears major economic, social and ecological costs while receiving few benefits from the proposed transmission line.

Let Bygones Be Bygones: The Case for India’s Inclusion in APEC

November 10, 2014
CIGI Policy Brief No. 51
The 2014 Beijing APEC summit, taking place on November 10-11, provides leaders with the opportunity to respond to worries about APEC’s relevance by pledging to add members in 2015. This policy brief examines the recent history of India's exclusion from APEC and argues that it must be among the new members in 2015.

The 2014 Survey of Progress in International Economic Governance

November 7, 2014
CIGI Policy Brief No. 50
The annual CIGI Survey of Progress in International Economic Governance assesses progress in four dimensions of international economic governance: macroeconomic and financial cooperation; cooperation on financial regulation; cooperation on trade; and cooperation on climate change.

Changing the Channel: Cultivating Security Cooperation in Northeast Asia

November 7, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 19
Alex Brouse and Dustin McDonald
Elevated political tensions in Northeast Asia have the possibility of spilling over into a larger military conflict. The authors of this Junior Fellows brief recommend that there be high-level talks regarding North Korean denuclearization between China, Japan, the United States and South Korea.

Regulating RoboCop: The Need for International Governance Innovation in Drone and AWS Development and Use

October 23, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 18
Melisa Foster and Virgil Haden-Pawlowski
Drones and autonomous weapons systems (AWS) are fundamentally changing the battlefield environment. This has created a revolution in military affairs by enabling greater territorial extension of power with reduced personnel battlefield presence and overall mission cost.

Disasters and Dividends: An Asia-Pacific Strategy for Canada

October 20, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 17
Jesse MacLean, Andrew McCauley, and Emily Newcombe
Canada’s continued economic prosperity relies on the successful diversification of its markets, which requires a comprehensive strategy to improve trade ties with the Asia-Pacific, given the Canadian government’s argument that strong economic growth has made that region a key priority. The authors of this Jr. Fellows policy brief conclude that Canada can strengthen its relationship with the Asia-Pacific through its humanitarian assistance and disaster response.

Strengthening Canada's Copyright System: A Fairer Mechanism for Fair Use Claims

October 8, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 16
Cory Campbell and Scott Janz
Fair use provisions serve to counteract the restrictive and innovation-hampering effects of copyright, reflecting the evolving norms regarding the reasonable use of protected content. Despite the recent expansion of fair use by the Copyright Modernization Act, Canadian copyright law imposes excessive costs on users that legally interact with protected content.

Dual Citizenship: Reducing Governance and Protection Gaps

October 1, 2014
CIGI Jr. Fellows Policy Brief No. 15
Busra Hacioglu, Alina Shams, Amy Wood, and Ruiqian Zhang
On December 29, 2013, the journalists Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed were arbitrarily arrested and detained in Cairo, Egypt. This case brings to light the complex web of obligations and transnational legalities regarding dual citizenship, which come to the fore during times of conflict.

Ukraine: Stress at the IMF

October 1, 2014
CIGI Policy Brief No. 49
In April 2014, in a departure from its normal aversion to lending to countries in conflict, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a US$17 billion loan to Ukraine to be disbursed over two years. At the time, Ukraine was three weeks away from a presidential election; engaged in combat with an armed separatist movement backed by Russia, its largest trading partner and supplier of energy; and experiencing a significant drain in foreign exchange reserves and bank deposits along with soaring yields on sovereign debt. The country was also reaping the returns of decades of economic mismanagement. Dire from both political and economic perspectives, the situation had the markings of a case where the IMF has the expertise to be usefully engaged, but there were also red flags demarcating circumstances that can hobble the IMF’s effectiveness.