Human Security and the Governance of Political Violence
Project Chairs: Dr Rob Imre and Associate Professor Jim Jose
In managing their populations states have often had to deal with radical challenges to their legitimacy. Such challenges might arise from various sources: the disaffected, from Indigenous groups, from radical political fringes or from those seeking to redress grievances. Few modern nation-states are spared these challenges. The degree of radicalisation might vary with the issue, but for the most part violence is rarely the political strategy of first choice. However, there have been numerous occasions where individuals, groups and movements have resorted to political violence to further their cause, and occasionally this has been a political strategy of first choice. Political regimes within specific states have therefore had to develop various responses, initiatives, and strategies to secure political and social order. The aim of the research group is to develop a research-based understanding of the governance of radicalised violence through a broad and systematic set of comparisons.
This research will enable the development of a more fruitful paradigm focused on practical approaches that can be used to guide policy-makers, reassure the public, and demonstrate real success in stopping violent challenges to national authority. We aim to explore the ways in which various nation-states have ‘governed’ religious and political violence. We also examine the human security implications of the changing global order. Hence the central research questions are: what has worked and why? These questions frame the comparative analysis of the governance of radicalised violence and involves pursuing research along two key dimensions:
(1)comparative analysis of the commonalities and differences of the social, political and historical conditions of selected regions experiencing violence thereby mapping the possible socio-political grounding for political and religious radicalisation, and (2) comparative analysis of the parallels and differences of the various ‘governance’ responses (involving more than just legislative/judicial responses) within and between the selected regions and states.
1. What activities do states recognise or define as ‘political violence’ or ‘radicalised
2. What kinds of ‘governances’ have various nation-states used to define, contain or eliminate radicalised
3. Which governance responses have proved (un)successful in containing radicalised violence?
4. How might such success (or lack of it) be defined?
5. What might be the appropriate forms of politics to address this phenomenon?
6. How have specific local conditions contributed to/determined particular policy responses?
7. How can states address eruptions of radicalised violence for violence’s sake.
8. How does radicalised violence affect human security?
9. How can governments ensure and enhance the various human security aspects of their own governance
structures in the face of violent challenges to the nation-state?