After 22 episodes of in-depth analysis of topics from across the spectrum of global governance and drawing over 2,400 viewers, season one of the Inside the Issues podcast series has wrapped up production until September 2011. The series will return in the fall for a new season of expert discussion on the most pressing challenges facing the international community.

One of the first programs to be recorded in the new CIGI broadcast studio, the first season of Inside the Issues was hosted by CIGI Chair David Welch, with the inaugural podcast in January 2011 featuring CIGI Distinguished Fellow Paul Heinbecker on “Canada’s Declining Foreign Policy.” Subsequent episodes early in the season discussed “War and Peace in Afghanistan” and “Global Governance and Climate Catastrophe.”

Like much of the world, the series turned its attention to the Middle East and North Africa during the Arab Spring, with “Revolution and Change in the Middle East” (episodes one and two), “Bin Laden’s Death and the Muslim World” and “Open Source Democracy” responding to remarkably swift changes in global affairs.

Other Inside the Issues episodes focused on topics related to CIGI events and publications. “Future Development Paradigms” and “IMF Surveillance and Reform” followed live events of a similar nature, and “Governing Online Gambling” was based on a book covering the same topic by CIGI Distinguished Fellow Andrew Cooper.

For a complete listing of topics from season one, see the episode guide below. The entire series continues to be available on the CIGI YouTube channel, and subscribers to our iTunes video and audio feeds will begin receiving the series podcasts once again in the fall.


Inside the Issues Ep. 1: Canadian Diplomacy — Getting Back in the Game

In the first podcast, Paul Heinbecker, CIGI distinguished fellow and former Canadian ambassador to the UN, discusses why Canada has gradually downsized its foreign policy ambitions, and how the country can once again be a leader on the international stage.

Inside the Issues Ep. 2: War and Peace in Afghanistan

CIGI Senior Fellow and Afghanistan expert Mark Sedra traces the roots of today's governance challenges in Afghanistan, and explains why he is now less optimistic that the country will eventually be stabilized.

Inside the Issues Ep. 3: Brazil as an Emerging Power

Kathryn Hochstetler, CIGI Chair of Governance in the Americas, discusses Brazil as an emerging power in Latin America and on the world stage.

Inside the Issues Ep. 4: Global Governance and Climate Catastrophe

CIGI Chair of Global Systems Thomas Homer-Dixon discusses the potentially catastrophic effects of climate change, and how new technologies and international governance can help find solutions.

Inside the Issues Ep. 5: The Politics and Science of Climate Change

CIGI Senior Fellow Jason Blackstock discusses the state of international climate negotiations, why they have stagnated and ideas for revitalizing global talks. Blackstock also addresses the prospect of geoengineering, and the governance challenges that surround deliberately manipulating Earth's climate to counteract the effects of global warming.

Inside the Issues Ep. 6: Human Rights Governance

Human rights expert, Andrew Thompson, discusses the state of international human rights and how they are governed by global institutions. Thompson says that, despite overall advancements in advancing rights, applying them consistently is an outstanding governance issue.

Inside the Issues Ep. 7: Revolution and Change in the Middle East

CIGI Senior Fellow Bessma Momani examines the demographic and economic forces that have caused mass protest across the Middle East. Momani says that the combination of an educated population, economic inequality and open Internet access have been lead factors in the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions, and also discusses the situation in Iran, Bahrain and Libya.

Inside the Issues Ep. 8: Inside the United Nations

In a special edition of the podcast series taped with a live audience, CIGI Distinguished Fellow Louise Fréchette assesses the past, present and future of the United Nations through the lens of her experience as the organization's first deputy secretary-general.

Inside the Issues Ep. 9: The Dark Side of Globalization

CIGI Distinguished Fellow Jorge Heine discusses his recent co-edited book, The Dark Side of Globalization. Published by the UN University Press in cooperation with CIGI, the book asks how governments, international organizations and civil society can mute the baleful effects of globalization while maximizing the beneficial consequences.

Inside the Issues Ep. 10: Comparative Social Policy

CIGI Chair Rianne Mahon discusses an often-ignored area of international governance  — comparative social policy. In her research, Mahon finds some surprising results between health and child care coverage in different countries, and goes on to contemplate what a coherent global social policy should look like.

Inside the Issues Ep. 11: The Structure of Global Order

Emanuel Adler, professor of international relations at the University of Toronto, discusses the current state of global order, and its historical and philosophical underpinnings. Adler also explains the steps that need to be taken to craft more durable, and sustainable, global governance structures in the future.

Inside the Issues Ep. 12: International Economic Cooperation

CIGI Executive Director Tom Bernes outlines the causes of the "Great Recession," evaluates the response from the G20 and describes the challenges facing the global economy moving forward.

Inside the Issues Ep. 13: Democracy and Diversity

Senior Fellow at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Yogendra Yadav, discusses the modern reality of multi-national states — countries with two or more identifiable nations within their borders. He says that the concept of "nation states" is largely outdated, and most contemporary countries should instead be thought of as "state nations."

Inside the Issues Ep. 14: Revolution and Change in the Middle East (2)

The themes of an earlier podcast with Middle East expert Bessma Momani are revisited in this episode, to re-assess the tenuous situation in Libya, Syria, Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Tunisia. Momani notes the stalemate between rebels and regime in Libya, the potential dangers of regime change in Syria and the increasing hostility towards Iran on the part of Gulf countries.

Inside the Issues Ep. 15: China and International Monetary Power

CIGI Senior Fellow and Acting Director, Global Development Gregory Chin explains the extent of Chinese monetary and economic power, and how its growing interdependence with the United States is actually increasing tension between the superpowers. He also discusses CIGI's development research agenda and a new commentary series: China and the WTO: 10 Years After Accession.

Inside the Issues Ep. 16: The Responsibility to Protect

Thomas Weiss, a presidential professor of political science at The CUNY Graduate Center, provides an insiders' perspective on crafting the "Responsibility to Protect" doctrine, and how it has (or has not) been applied. Weiss goes on to identify why the doctrine was applied in Libya, having failed in its implementation nearly everywhere else.

Inside the Issues Ep. 17: Bin Laden's Death and the Muslim World

CIGI Distinguished Fellow Gordon Smith discusses the death of Osama bin Laden and what it means for the Arab Spring, the war in Afghanistan and international security at large. He predicts that eliminating bin Laden will, ultimately, lead to disengagement with Afghanistan, and the revolutions across the Arab world will continue to develop for years to come.

Inside the Issues Ep. 18: Future Development Paradigms

Secretary General of the Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies, Mukesh Kapila, talks about the next generation of international development — one that will go beyond "feeding and watering" those in need and move away from donor-driven official development assistance projects.

Inside the Issues Ep. 19: Peace Advocacy and Civil Society

Co-founder of Project Ploughshares and Officer of the Order of Canada, Ernie Regehr, discusses his career as a peace advocate in civil society, from his early days as an outsider in the policy-making process to the current climate of mutual respect with government decision makers.

Inside the Issues Ep. 20: Open Source Democracy Promotion

Ben Rowswell, visiting scholar at the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, discusses the transformative role of technology and social media in the politics of Egypt, the broader Middle East and other countries around the world.

Inside the Issues Ep. 21: Governing Online Gambling

Andrew F. Cooper, CIGI distinguished fellow and author of Internet Gambling Offshore, discusses the global governance implications of what the book calls "casino capitalism." Cooper takes the fascinating case of Antigua — a small Caribbean country that launched a successful appeal against the United States at the World Trade Organization — a hotbed for online gambling that ran afoul of American political and moral sensibilities.

Inside the Issues Ep. 22: IMF surveillance and reform

Deputy director of the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) Independent Evaluation Office, Ruben Lamdany, discusses the IMF's performance in the run-up to the financial and economic crisis. He says that the IMF's banner message in that period was "characterized by overconfidence in the soundness and resiliency of large financial institutions and endorsement of the financial practices in the main financial centres."

The opinions expressed in this article/multimedia are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of CIGI or its Board of Directors.