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Teens with TBI's

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Brent Sullivan
Brent Sullivan

Global Corruption (Original Mix) TOP

The TNRC project recently hosted a Learning Series webinar where a simple framework was introduced for non-specialists to address corrupt behaviors that may undermine conservation and natural resource management (NRM) outcomes. A recording of the webinar is above. Outlined here are the framework presented, and some concrete examples of what employing this approach can look like, in practice. Focus is given to answering three learning questions: (1) What is a behavior change approach to tackling natural resource corruption?; (2) Which aspects of a behavior change approach can non-specialists easily apply?; and (3) Where can I find out more and receive guidance or support to get started?

Global Corruption (Original Mix)

A behavior change approach to tackling natural resource corruption is one that uses cognitive, psychological and social science research, insight, evidence and approaches to influence the motivations, attitudes, values and actions of those engaged in corrupt practices. The objective is to change undesirable behavior so that it becomes less corrosive for the public good.

The INTEGRITY Framework for changing corrupt behaviors that is introduced in this webinar and blog is a mnemonic or memory aid to help ensure that conservation and NRM practitioners consider a behavior change component when designing their projects. This Framework can be applied to any form of corruption, from petty to grand corruption amongst individuals or institutions, and to forms such as bribery, extortion, cronyism, nepotism, parochialism, patronage, influence peddling, graft or embezzlement.

Appealing to a mix of emotion as well as logic is also recommended, as is celebrating the positives of the desired behavior and removing barriers to uptake, whilst not over-emphasizing negative factors associated with the bad behavior such as fear, guilt and shame. For example, rather than issuing campaign messaging that invokes public resentment at the injustice of grand or State-wide corruption, encourage mid-level executives in State-owned infrastructural development or mineral extraction companies to champion more transparent and legally robust practice as part of a wider move within the business of increasing innovation, improving performance, enhancing the brand image and attracting more international clients.

Success factors, lessons learned and insights arising from implementation of behavior change approaches to tackle natural resource corruption should be shared with the wider conservation and NRM community to help to streamline efforts for others, and to add to the evidence base in this important area of innovation. To share your experience and explore opportunities to collaborate on learning, contact: [email protected].

This post captures insights on the connections between corruption and the accelerating illegal logging and deforestation occurring during the COVID-19 pandemic. Experts used case studies from Peru, Brazil and Mozambique to focus on the causes and criminal activity associated with deforestation and approaches for global practitioners to protect forest resources, address governance challenges, and safeguard rights. The speakers were Maureen Moriarty-Lempke, Senior Fellow, Duke University Center for International Development and Senior Associate, Land and Security, CDA Collaborative Cambridge; Julia M. Urrunaga, Peru Director, Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA); and Julia Marisa Sekula, Coordinator - Climate and Security, Instituto Igarapé. The panel was moderated by Debra LaPrevotte, Senior Investigator, the Sentry and introduced by Dr Louise Shelley, Director, Terrorism, Transnational Crime and Corruption Center (TraCCC) and University Professor, Schar School of Policy and Government, George Mason University. The virtual panel had a global audience of practitioners from 46 countries around the world. A recording is above, and a PDF of the slides from the event can be downloaded here.

Deforestation in Brazil jumped 85% from 2018 to 2019 and has accelerated under COVID, despite the lockdown. Equally, the culture of impunity has been fortified during the pandemic by the current minister of environment that continues to try to push through legislature that harms the environment and seeks to indemnify irregular and illegal actors. 70% of timber products from the Amazon come from illegal operations, which may involve theft of wood from conservation areas and indigenous reserves, use of slave labor, and laundering of stolen timber. This is just part of a larger scheme of environmental crime and corruption that starts with small fires, to destroy the shrubbery and undergrowth. Then the valuable timber gets cut and sold to international markets. More fires are set, so that cattle and soybean production can be brought in. Soybeans, beef and lumber are all important exports with powerful lobbies, making the cycle is hard to break.

Given the global impact, however, there is increasing international pressure on the government to do something about it. In Brazil, there are relatively few actors involved in this illegal activity. Findings identified three or four major export companies who are responsible for the great majority of the illegal exports. They export to 14 companies in Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, the UK, France and the U.S. These companies, in turns are funded by international banks. Much of the data is in government hands. So the private sector and the financial sector need to step in here, and demand technological solutions to promote transparency.

In Brazil there has been an unprecedented increase in all indices of corruption. The Minister of Environment announced that he would use the COVID moment to relax environmental regulations. This is a strong signal to illegal actors, since every time there is a hint of relaxation in restrictions, there is a big surge in illegal activity. Unfortunately, COVID is halting patrols by police and inspectors, but it is not halting the activities of criminals. And the precarious economic conditions resulting from the pandemic are providing a greater incentive for individuals to participate in illegal activities.

Peru: It is not all negative. Operation Amazonas was an important step forward, and resulted in the destruction of more than 70 containers of illegal timber sent to the U.S. We have been making some progress working with shipping companies. But we need to work harder to educate consumers. A new app is about to be released to enable consumers to do research when they buy furniture. This could make a big difference. In Peru, there is corruption in government agencies, but there are still lots of amazing people in the public sector who are working very hard to protect the forests. China recently changed their laws and added references to legality in timber. It is not specific enough, but it is movement forward.

In an afflicted country, a resource boom attracts large inflows of foreign capital, which leads to an appreciation of the local currency and a boost for imports that are now comparatively cheaper. This sucks labor and capital away from other sectors of the economy, such as agriculture and manufacturing, which economists say are more important for growth and competitiveness. As these labor-intensive export industries lag, unemployment could rise, and the country could develop an unhealthy dependence on the export of natural resources. In extreme cases, a petrostate forgoes local oil production and instead derives most of its oil wealth through high taxes on foreign drillers. Petrostate economies are then left highly vulnerable to unpredictable swings in global energy prices and capital flight.

Analysts anticipate that a global shift from fossil fuel energy to renewables such as solar and wind will force petrostates to diversify their economies. Nearly two hundred countries, including Venezuela, have joined the Paris Agreement, a binding treaty that requires states to make specific commitments to mitigate climate change.

Broader processes of globalization carried capitalism across the world. By the beginning of the nineteenth century, a series of loosely connected market systems had come together as a relatively integrated global system, in turn intensifying processes of economic and other globalization.[54][55] Late in the 20th century, capitalism overcame a challenge by centrally-planned economies and is now the encompassing system worldwide,[16][need quotation to verify][56] with the mixed economy as its dominant form in the industrialized Western world.

Industrialization allowed cheap production of household items using economies of scale, while rapid population growth created sustained demand for commodities. The imperialism of the 18th-century decisively shaped globalization in this period.[when?][54][57][58][59]

In this period,[when?] the global financial system was mainly tied to the gold standard. The United Kingdom first formally adopted this standard in 1821. Soon to follow were Canada in 1853, Newfoundland in 1865, the United States and Germany (de jure) in 1873. New technologies, such as the telegraph, the transatlantic cable, the radiotelephone, the steamship and railways allowed goods and information to move around the world to an unprecedented degree.[61]

The end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union allowed for capitalism to become a truly global system in a way not seen since before World War I. The development of the neoliberal global economy would have been impossible without the fall of communism.[67][68]

In the works of Adam Smith, the idea of capitalism is made possible through competition which creates growth. Although capitalism has not entered mainstream economics at the time of Smith, it is vital to the construction of his ideal society. One of the foundational blocks of capitalism is competition. Smith believed that a prosperous society is one where "everyone should be free to enter and leave the market and change trades as often as he pleases."[108] He believed that the freedom to act in one's self-interest is essential for the success of a capitalist society. The fear arises[weasel words] that if all participants focus on their own goals, society's well-being will be water under the bridge. Smith maintains that despite the concerns of intellectuals, "global trends will hardly be altered if they refrain from pursuing their personal ends."[109] He insisted that the actions of a few participants cannot alter the course of society. Instead, Smith maintained that they should focus on personal progress instead and that this will result in overall growth to the whole.Competition between participants, "who are all endeavoring to justle one another out of employment, obliges every man to endeavor to execute his work" through competition towards growth.[108] 041b061a72


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