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Responding to the Future: Conflict and Environment over Time Jim Lee American University January 2006.

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Presentation on theme: "Responding to the Future: Conflict and Environment over Time Jim Lee American University January 2006."— Presentation transcript:

1 Responding to the Future: Conflict and Environment over Time Jim Lee American University January 2006

2 Changing Nations and National Interests The state system is fragmenting. The number of states in the world is growing due to increasing self-determination. The global system is strengthening. States are becoming much more interdependent. Demands due to population and development will continue to grow. Stresses on the environment will grow. These demands and stresses, coupled with changing national interests, will be sources for conflict. Conflict today is extremely lethal.

3 The Problem of Conflict and Environment Conflict and environment are age-old problems. Perspectives on the value of the environment change with time: the examples of petroleum and bird guano. There is little systematic research and few tools available for understanding short and long-term conflict.

4 Thinking About Conflict and Environment Environment and Change in Western North America: A China Lake Story (see following map) 1. China Lake: A Lake without Water and a Place without Chinese 2. How Lake Manley became Death Valley 3. Native People in the Owens Valley and the Arrival of American Ranchers 4.How LA Drank Lake Owens 5.The Manzanar Japanese Internment Camp in World War II 5.Restoring Lake Owens: Defense meets Ecology

5 Map of Eastern Sierra Nevada

6 Knowledge Review Some Major Sources: Singer, Bremer, Gleick, Westing, Homer-Dixon, SIPRI Their research was used to guide thinking on the construct of the format and the cases of interest. Both mix conflict and environment indicators and issues.

7 A Dichotomous Approach to Key Issues 1.Push and Pull 2.Scarcity and Surplus 3.Source and Sink 4.Demand and Supply 5.Animate and Inanimate 6.Finite and Infinite 7.Specie and Habitat 8.General and Specific 9.Sovereign and Non-sovereign

8 Approach to Case Studies Time periods (more discrete periods are also possible) Ancient (to year 0) Middle (year 0 to 1900) Modern (1900 on) Build an Initial Inventory of Exemplar or Seed Cases based on Type Use three dichotomous types to examine six initial case studies per time period. Variable-oriented case study indicators that are comparable across cases Create a kind of structured chronology.

9 Ancient Cases Dichotomous Dimensions Environ- mental Breadth Environ- mental Breadth Social Type Conflict Dimension CategoryConflict over General Resources Conflict over Specific Resources Conflict over Source Resources Conflict over Sink Resources Non- territory Territory TypeClimate Change ForestsArable LandWaterWeaponsBoundaries Ancient CaseNeanderthal 35,000 bc Cedars 2,600 bc Mohenjo 1,700 bc Nile 900 bc Assyria 600 bc Great Wall 200 bc

10 Middle Cases Dichotomous Dimensions Environ- mental Breadth Environ- mental Breadth Social Type Conflict Dimension CategoryConflict over General Resource Conflict over Specific Resource Conflict over Source Resource Conflict over Sink Resource Non- territory Territory TypeClimate Change ForestsArable Land WaterWeaponsBoundary Middle Case Vineland 1000 Robin Hood 1450 Maya 800 Anasazi 1200 Buffalo 1870 Hadrian 150

11 Modern Cases DimensionsEnviron- mental Breadth Environ- mental Breadth Social Type Conflict Dimension CategoryConflict over General Resources Conflict over Specific Resources Conflict over Source Resources Conflict over Sink Resources Non- territory Territory TypeClimate Change ForestsArable Land WaterWeaponsBoundaries Modern Case Sahel 1997 Khmer 1992 Rwanda 1994 Jordan 1967 Kuwait 1991 DMZ 1953

12 The ICE Inventory 145 Case reports reported online All coded on the basis of 16 categories Coding categories are almost all delimited Coding categories are mostly nominal and ordinal

13 The ICE Coding Categories a.Basic Attributes 1.Abstract 2.Description 3.Duration 4.Location 5.Actors b.Environment Attributes 6.Type of Environmental Problem 7.Type of Habitat 8.Act and Harm Sites c.Conflict Attributes 9.Type of Conflict 10.Level of Conflict 11.Fatality Level of Dispute (military and civilian fatalities) d.Conflict Environment Overlap 12.Environment-Conflict Link and Dynamics 13.Level of Strategic Interest 14.Outcome of Dispute e.Related Information and Sources 15.Related Cases 16.Relevant Literature and Websites

14 What the Data Reveals: One Way Breakouts An Increase of Cases with End of Cold War

15 Durations of Conflict are a Normal Curve

16 Habitats: It’s About Water

17 The Sub-State Factor

18 The Tension Belt

19 Fatalities: Low and High Scale Events

20 Two Way Breakouts: Civil and Mid-term

21 Conflict Type and Continent: Where Matters

22 Conflict Type and Habitat: What Matters

23 Conflict Level and Type: How Matters

24 The ICE Expert Decision-Making System

25 The Conflict Sub-System

26 The Environment Sub-System

27 The Conflict and Environment Outcome

28 21 st Century Trends in Conflict and Environment and Management 1.General Resources Demand 2.Specific Resources Demand 3.Pollution as Conflict Cause 4.Localization of Conflict 5.The Tension Belt 6.Managing the Two Types of Tension Belt Cases


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