Marginalisation of the majority world

A complex interplay of discrimination, global poverty, inequality and deepening socio-economic divisions, together make for key elements of global insecurity. While overall global wealth has increased, the benefits of this economic growth have not been equally shared. The rich-poor divide is actually growing, with a very heavy concentration of growth in relatively few parts of the world, and poverty getting much worse in many other regions. The ‘majority world’ of Asia, Africa and Latin America feel the strongest effects of marginalisation as a result of global elites, concentrated in North America and Europe, striving to maintain political, cultural, economic and military global dominance.

Tomorrow's Crises Today: Rio - fighting in the favelas

UN Habitat and IRIN | | September 2010


'The sheer scale and chaotic construction of the favelas, which became home to hundreds of thousands of migrants, made them the ideal milieu for drug gangs to hide from the police and set up initially paternalistic, de-facto governments, albeit without any concrete political aims.'

This report explores the human insecurity issues that stem from rapid urbanisation, poverty, cultures of violence and ineffective governance.

The Great Transition

Issues:Climate change, Competition over resources, Marginalisation

Humanity appears caught in a trap with no way out. ‘Business as usual’ is no longer an option. However, halting and reversing our consumption of more and more ‘stuff’ appears likely to trigger a massive depression with serious unemployment and poverty. This is certainly true if all we do is ‘apply the brakes’ without fundamentally redesigning the whole economic system.

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Youth Breaking Cycles of Marginalisation, Resource Competition and Violence in Yemen

Issues:Competition over resources, Global militarisation, Marginalisation

Last month in Yemen, 40 young men and women, all under the age of 30, came together to form the country's first cross-tribal youth council to address violence and marginalisation. Disputes over land claims and competition for resources and government services often lead to violence and cycles of revenge killings that can extend over a decade, hindering the work of government and international development agencies, and isolating citizens from the state.

Image source: NDI.

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India's Maoists: South Asia’s "Other" Insurgency

Article | The New Security Beat | July 2010

Issues:Competition over resources, Marginalisation

Although India's Maoists are largely politically motivated (see similar movements in Nepal and the Philippines), the country's Adivasi tribals, driven by grievances with the Indian government over decades-long resource mismanagement and systematic marginalization, are beginning to align with, and support, the Maoist insurgency, contributing to what has been described as India's “single biggest internal security challenge” - as an article from The New Security Beat reports.

Source: The New Security Beat

Image Source: Wen-Yan King

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Less Is More: Sensible Defense Cuts to Boost Sustainable Security

John Norris & Andrew Sweet | Center for American Progress | June 2010

Issues:Climate change, Competition over resources, Global militarisation, Marginalisation

From the Center for American Progress:

“If we are to meet the myriad challenges around the world in the coming decades,” argues Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, then our “country must strengthen other important elements of national power both institutionally and financially, and create the capability to integrate and apply all of the elements of national power to problems and challenges abroad.” Gates’s experience leading our armed forces under two presidents underscores the importance of not relying solely on our unquestioned military might to protect our shores and national security interests around the globe. Instead, Gates maintains, we need to adopt the concept of sustainable security—a strategy that embraces the need to slim defense spending, bringing our own fiscal house in order while investing in nonmilitary economic and social development programs abroad to combat the conditions that breed poverty and political instability.

Article and image source: Center for American Progress

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New Report: Britain Needs Full International Security Review

Paul Rogers | Oxford Research Group | May 2010

Issues:Global militarisation, Marginalisation

A new report by the Oxford Research Group on the UK's Strategic Defence Review calls for the cancellation of the aircraft carrier project, the scaling-down of the Trident programme, and the establishment of an independent Defence Procurement Authority.

Image source: Sgt Rob Knight RLC (MOD/Crown 2010).

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