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Residenzakademie Würzburg der Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes: Die Perspektiven der Welternährung im Fokus

An der Residenzakademie Würzburg der Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes (SdV) fand im Oktober 2013 ein Seminar statt, das weitgehend von Studierenden organisiert wurde. Neben dem wissenschaftlichen Programm (Programm) wurde auch ein kulturelles Programm mit Besichtigungen des Weltkulturerbes angeboten. Studierende aus verschiedenen Fachrichtungen beschäftigten sich mit den Perspektiven der Welternährung 2050 in einem Seminar mit dem Titel Welternährung zwischen Mangel und Überfluss

Im Rahmen des wissenschaftlichen Programms wurden sechs Workshops durchgeführt (Workshops). Alle Facetten des Problems konnten dadurch aus interdisziplinärer Sicht abgedeckt werden. Professor Karl Wohlmuth befasste sich in seinem Workshop mit den Ökonomischen Grundlagen der Welternährung 2050 und ging auch auf eine Agenda für Afrika ein, da insbesondere in Afrika südlich der Sahara die Problemzonen hinsichtlich der Ernährungssicherung liegen (vgl. Lecture Notes und Präsentation). Professor Karl Wohlmuth ging auf vier zentrale Aspekte ein, die in vier Gruppenphasen des Seminars abgehandelt wurden: Erstens, auf die diversen Instrumente zur Messung der Ernährungssicherheit, um deren Relevanz festzustellen und um die Anwendungsmöglichkeiten auf afrikanische Länder zu prüfen; zweitens auf ausgewählte Szenarien der Welternährung, um die Perspektiven der Welternährung bis 2050 zu erfassen und um zu sehen, wie die Szenarien als Basis für langfristige Politikentscheidungen und Politikänderungen genutzt werden können; drittens auf die globalen Konzernstrategien der Nahrungsmittel- und Agrarkonzerne, um zu sehen, welche Chancen bzw. Risiken sich von daher für die Welternährung ergeben; und viertens auf die globalen Ordnungsmodelle, um zu prüfen, inwieweit die für eine globale Ernährungssicherung wichtigen internationalen öffentlichen Güter durch die existierenden internationalen Organisationen auch angemessen produziert werden können. In der Agenda für Afrika wurden die Probleme in Afrika identifiziert und auch Lösungsansätze vorgestellt.

 

Die Teilnehmer an der Residenzakademie Würzburg der Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes (SdV)

 

Die Teilnehmer am Seminar (vgl. Fotogalerie) haben Präsentationen erarbeitet, die als Basis für eine allgemeine Diskussion in den vier Gruppenphasen dienten. Im Rahmen des Seminar-Plenums wurden Berichte über die Ergebnisse aller Workshops/Arbeitsgruppen gegeben.

Professor Karl Wohlmuth befasst sich mit der Thematik, insbesondere in Bezug auf Afrika, im Rahmen der Forschungsgruppe Afrikanische Entwicklungsperspektiven, die das African Development Perspectives Yearbook herausgibt (Link zur Research Group: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/forschung/forsch-adpy.htm) und im Rahmen des Forschungsprojektes Agroindustrielle Entwicklungskonzepte für Afrika (Link zum Forschungsprojekt Agroindustrielle Entwicklungskonzepte für Afrika: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/Agro-IndustrialDevelopment.htm).

 

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Finanzspekulation und Nahrungsmittelpreise

Finanzspekulation und Nahrungsmittelpreise: Gefährden die Finanzmärkte die Welternährung?

Eine neue Studie von Professor Hans-Heinrich Bass für Foodwatch e. V. ist soeben als Heft Nummer 42 in der IWIM-Reihe "Globalisierung der Weltwirtschaft" erschienen (IWIM-Reihe "Globalisierung der Weltwirtschaft", Heft Nummer 42, November 2013, PDF).

Professor Bass geht in dieser Studie auf die Kontroversen über die Rolle der Finanzspekulation mit Nahrungsmitteln ein. Ein zentrales Problemfeld der Globalisierung der Weltwirtschaft wird debattiert. Es geht um die Frage, ob die Globalisierung der Finanzmärkte mit einer nachhaltigen Welternährung überhaupt vereinbar ist. Diese Kontroverse hat nicht nur die akademische Welt erreicht, sondern beeinflusst auch immer stärker die Finanzwelt und die Politik, nicht nur in der Bundesrepublik, sondern auch in der gesamten EU und in den USA. Es ist daher wichtig, die Studien zu dem Thema zu sichten und vor allem die methodischen Grundlagen zu überprüfen. Bisher ist dies noch nicht geschehen; die Studie betritt insofern Neuland. In der Studie von Professor Bass wird insbesondere auf die ökonometrischen Ansätze in den verschiedenen Studien eingegangen wie auch auf die Qualität der zugrundeliegenden Daten. 

In der Studie von Professor Bass wird in mehreren Schritten das vorhandene Material geprüft: Zunächst wird das Thema der "Finanzialisierung" der Rohstoffmärkte erläutert, und dann werden die verfügbaren Daten geprüft; es folgt eine Analyse des generellen Einflusses der Finanzialisierung auf die Preisbildung, gefolgt von Analysen der Auswirkungen der Finanzialisierung auf Preisspitzen und Preisschwankungen. In weiteren Abschnitten der Studie geht es um die Transmissionsmechanismen des Preisgeschehens vom Terminmarkt auf die Spotmärkte. Auch der weitere Forschungsbedarf und der politische Handlungsbedarf werden diskutiert.

 

 

Die Studie wurde von Foodwatch  e. V. (Link Foodwatch Deutschland: http://www.foodwatch.org/de/) bei Professor Bass in Auftrag gegeben. Beim Pressgespräch in Berlin waren der Autor (Professor Bass), der Auftraggeber (Thilo Bode für Foodwatch) und der Herausgeber der Studie (Professor Wohlmuth) anwesend. Professor Wohlmuth und Professor Bass haben in den letzten Jahren mehrere Projekte zu Themen der Globalisierung der Weltwirtschaft, der Welternährung und der Agroindustrie in Afrika gemeinsam bearbeitet (Link Agroindustrie-Projekte:http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/Agro-IndustrialDevelopment.htm). Professor Bass hat auch eine wichtige Studie über "Finanzmärkte als Hungerverursacher" für die Welthungerhilfe verfasst (Link zur Welthungerhilfe:http://www.welthungerhilfe.de/fileadmin/user_upload/Mediathek/Studie_Nahrungsmittelspekulation_Bass.pdf und weitere Inputs unter:http://www.welthungerhilfe.de/?id=1299).

Gedruckte Ausgaben der Studie von Professor Bass sind über Foodwatch Deutschland erhältlich: Martin Rücker, Leiter Presse- und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit, Foodwatch e. V., Brunnenstr. 181, 10119 Berlin, Telefon: +49 (0)30 / 240 476-290 und Fax: +49 (0)30 / 240 476-26 und E-Mail: martin.ruecker@foodwatch.de

 

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Chinesische Hochschulexperten aus der Provinz Hainan, VR China informieren sich über das Hochschulsystem und die Innovationspolitik des Landes Bremen

Vertreter von Hochschuleinrichtungen und Forschungsinstituten in der Provinz Hainan, VR China haben über eine Woche im November 2013 am International Graduate Center der Hochschule Bremen an einem Weiterbildungskurs über "Hochschulen und der regionale Technologietransfer" teilgenommen. Professor Karl Wohlmuth von der Universität Bremen referierte über "Nationale Innovationssysteme, lokale Technologietransfers und globaler Wettbewerb". 

Ausgangspunkt der Ausführungen war ein Vergleich der Position von Deutschland und China im globalen Innovationswettbewerb. Der Bremer Professor betonte dann die Interdependenzen zwischen dem Nationalen Innovationssystem des Bundes und dem Regionalen Innovationssystem des Landes Bremen. Die Hightech-Strategie 2020 der Bundesrepublik Deutschland wurde mit der Innovationsstrategie 2020 des Landes Bremen kontrastiert. Dann wurden die verschiedenen Facetten des Regionalen Innovationssystems von Bremen erläutert: die Rolle von F&E und von Innovationen in den bremischen Unternehmen; die Finanzierung von Innovationen und von F&E in den Bremer Unternehmen; das Forschungs- und Ausbildungssystem in Bremen; und schließlich die F&E-Politik und die relevanten Bereiche der Arbeits- und Steuerpolitik in Bremen. Besonders betont wurden die Verknüpfungen zwischen diesen Eckpfeilern des Innovationssystems. An einigen Beispielen, wie etwa Aviabelt als einer Vereinigung der bremischen Luftfahrtindustrie, wurde der Bremer Ansatz der Vernetzung von Akteuren der Industrie mit der Wissenschaft verdeutlicht (vgl. die Präsentation). 

Der Weiterbildungskurs wurde inhaltlich von Innovationsexperten der Universitäten und Hochschulen des Landes Bremen bzw. von InnoWi/Innovationen für die Wirtschaft gestaltet.

 

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Meeting of African Junior Researchers in Hanover at Herrenhausen Palace, VolkswagenStiftung

Meeting of African Junior Researchers in Hanover at Herrenhausen Palace, VolkswagenStiftung

A great event for the postdoctoral fellows who are supported by the VolkswagenStiftung.  180 junior researchers, representatives from African Universities and African Research Organizations and experts on African development met at the rebuilt Conference Center of the Herrenhausen Palace in Hanover. The VolkswagenStiftung started its Africa Initiative early in 2003 and so celebrated with this event in Hanover also 10 years of support for African researchers who work in cooperation with German research partners and their respective institutions. While in earlier years (2003 - 2008) research projects and fellowships were granted for research projects with graduate and doctoral students, since 2008 the VolkswagenStiftung is funding a programme for postdoctoral students.

At the Conference in Hanover the junior researchers presented their projects – in lectures, presentations and poster sessions. A broad spectrum of research issues was made visible. Research programmes and fellowships were financed for the subjects Natural Resources, Livelihood Management, Social Sciences, Humanities, Engineering Sciences, and Neglected Tropical Diseases. Among the African countries with a greater number of funded postdoctoral fellows were Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzani, South Africa, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Chad, Ghana, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Sudan and Burkina Faso.

Professor Karl Wohlmuth from the University of Bremen was invited as an expert on African Development. He was involved in a research project of the VolkswagenStiftung as director and cooperation partner for the project “Governance and Social Action in Sudan after the Comprehensive  Peace Agreement of January 9, 2005”, a project which started in 2005 and ended in 2012 (see Governance Project Link: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/africa/Sudan.Drittmittel/Governance_bak.htm).

 

The Conference Participants in Front
of the Herrenhausen Palace, Hanover

 

See more information about the Meeting (Link VolkswagenStiftung: http://www.volkswagenstiftung.de/en/events/calendar-of-events/veranstaltungsseite/meeting-of-african-junior-researchers-in-hanover.html), about the Programme (Link
VolkswagenStiftung:
http://www.volkswagenstiftung.de/fileadmin/grafiken/pressebilder/2013/Grantees-Meeting_Afrika-Initiative/Grantees-Meeting_Afrika-Initiative_-_Programm.pdf), about the  Portraits of funded Researchers (Link
VolkswagenStiftung:
http://www.volkswagenstiftung.de/en/veranstaltungen/veranstaltungskalender/veranstaltungsseite/grantees-meeting-afrika-initiative/im-portraet.html), and about the Research Funding Procedures (Link VolkswagenStiftung: http://www.volkswagenstiftung.de/en/events/calendar-of-events/veranstaltungsseite/meeting-of-african-junior-researchers-in-hanover/interview-with-dr-almut-steinbach.html)

 

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Re-regulating International Commodity Markets: A New Essay Was Just Published

In this essay Back To John Maynard Keynes in Regulating International Commodity Markets Professor Karl Wohlmuth compares weak and strong forms of global governance of international raw materials markets. This is done by comparing the "transparency agenda" with the "structural reform agenda". John Maynard Keynes has worked for decades academically on commodity markets, on speculation and storage, on forward markets and buffer stocks, etc., but he has also gained practical experience on these markets by intensive commercial trading activity on various commodity markets. Based on this immense knowledge he has influenced fundamentally the Post-World War Two Agenda with the proposed International Clearing Union (ICU) and the proposed International Trade Organization (ITO). Both proposed organizations contain detailed provisions for establishing a world order on international commodity markets. He was very much concerned about the impact of price volatility of raw materials on global macroeconomics, and he was deeply convinced that appropriate regulations of international commodity markets and of national resource sectors would impact positively on peace, macroeconomic stability, employment and development. He was convinced that strong global governance must be based on simple, stable, effective, consensual and binding rules. On the basis of this Keynesian framework the "transparency agenda" is evaluated.

Now the "transparency agenda" with regard of international raw materials markets is so much debated, but it is a rather weak form of global governance, although it contains various proposals, voluntary agreements and codes of conduct. The "structural reform agenda" however represents a rather strong form of global governance of the global commodity markets and of the national resources sectors. It contains internationally binding agreements on investment, trade, exploration, production and use of resources, food security, and sustainable development. Also new global governance institutions are discussed based on the international public goods approach. In this essay the "transparency agenda" is discussed in great detail while the "structural reform agenda" is presented only in a short description in the Conclusions and Outlook section. The essay was published in the quarterly journal "Berichte" from the Research Institute of IWVWW e. V. in Berlin, the magazine of our partner institute (see Publications Karl Wohlmuth). A version of the essay will also be published in the IWIM Blue Series Discussion Papers (see IWIM Blue Series Discussion Papers). The "Structural Reform Agenda"  needs a further elaboration in a follow-up paper.

 

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UNMISS in Juba and Professor Karl Wohlmuth from the University of Bremen agree to cooperate on assessing the developments in South Sudan:

Professor Karl Wohlmuth from the University of Bremen and UNMISS (United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan) have agreed to cooperate in assessing the situation with regard of peace, security and development in South Sudan. UNMISS has a mandate since 9 July 2011 to consolidate peace and security and to establish conditions for development (see the link to UNMISS: http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/unmiss/). Professor Karl Wohlmuth and a representative from UNMISS have recently agreed in Bremen to exchange information and to assess the situation in South Sudan. Professor Wohlmuth works since 1978 on development in Sudan, researching on economic development and the political economy of Sudan. Since 2005 the professor researches on the implications of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between the North and the South, and since 2011 he works about the modalities of a strategic cooperation between Sudan and South Sudan (see the link: Sudan Economy Research Group/SERG and the project Economic Policies in Sudan after the Referendum of 2011). Recently a documentary film by ARTE has shown the tremendous difficulties to establish the foundations for a viable state of South Sudan (see the link to the film by ARTE: http://www.arte.tv/guide/de/045315-000/suedsudan-geburt-eines-staates#details-photos, and see also the Documentary Film "South Sudan - Birth of a State"). Any progress will depend on a strategic cooperation between Sudan and South Sudan as the border region between the two countries is so important for peace, security, growth  and development in both countries.

 

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African Development Perspectives Yearbook Volume 17: International Call for Papers and Invitation to Guest Editors

Volume 16 of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook with the title "Macroeconomic Policy Formation in Africa" has been finalized and the manuscript is now with the publisher (see the Synopsis for Volume 16), and the work on Volume 17 with the title "Africa's Progress in Regional and Global Economic Integration" is starting soon.

Contributors are invited to submit their proposals and abstracts (see the International Call for Papers for Volume 17) to the Editors. Also potential Guest Editors are invited to express their interest to edit one of the four Units of Volume 17 of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook - from the conceptual start to the final editorial work. Guest Editors can see the details about the four Units in the Call for Papers for Volume 17. Please contact the Managing Editor and the Volume Editor of Volume 17 of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook in case of interest. For Unit 5 (Unit with Book Reviews and Book Notes) publishers and institutes are invited to send their books, research papers, issues of journals and documents to the Book Reviews/Book Notes Editor (see also the respective details in the International Call for Papers for Volume 17).

The African Development Perspectives Yearbook is published by the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen which has established since 1989 (the year of the publication of Volume 1 on Human Dimensions of Adjustment) an international network of scientific supporters and contributors (see details on the Research Group on African Development Perspectives). The African Development Perspectives Yearbook selects for each volume a specific theme of utmost importance for the building of new policy and governance frameworks in Africa (see the details about the already Published Volumes of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook). The main purpose of the edited volumes is it to inform the public about recent developments in Africa - by academic articles, analytical reports, specific country information and project reports. The aim is also to influence about inclusive and sustainable development strategies in Africa policy makers in governments, in the UN and related organizations, in the global donor community and in international NGOs, but also development experts at universities and media people.

 

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Public Expenditure Review of the Agriculture Sector at the Sub-National Level in Nigeria:

Public Expenditure Review of the Agriculture Sector at the Sub-National Level in Nigeria: The Case of Ondo Stat

Professor Reuben Adeolu Alabi from the Department of Agricultural Economics, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Nigeria and a former Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow at IWIM was appointed as a consultant to World Bank to do research on benefit incidence of public expenditure in the agriculture sector of Ondo State (see the Project Note). Professor Alabi has developed a version of the Benefit Incidence Approach (BIA) during his researches over two years at IWIM, and he has applied the methodology to education and health sectors in Nigeria (see the respective issues of the IWIM Blue Series Discussion Papers). The main question of the new study for World Bank is how public expenditure to agriculture sectors affects various groups of population working there and depending on agriculture as a basis of their livelihood. So the study asks what the benefits of public expenditure for agriculture sectors (at all government levels) are for different groups of farmers in the state and in a local government area. It is of importance for policymakers to know who benefits from public expenditure to agriculture sectors: large agricultural entrepreneurs or medium and small farmers. Also public expenditure to agriculture at local government areas (LGAs) in Ondo State will be investigated in this regard. 

Professor Karl Wohlmuth and Professor Alabi intend to cooperate on Technology and Innovation in African Agriculture: The Limits of Subsidization of Inputs, using a methodology to measure the subsidization by inputs and income groups for Nigeria, Malawi and Kenya. A research proposal is now outlined. 

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Macroeconomic Policy Formation in Sudan and South Sudan - The Need for a Strategic Economic Cooperation

This is the title of Unit Three for the forthcoming volume of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook with the title "Macroeconomic Policy Formation in Africa". The Editors of the Yearbook took the event of South Sudan's Independence on July 9, 2011 as an obligation to plan for a whole Unit on the Sudan and the South Sudan for the new volume of the Yearbook. As the separation of the South is of tremendous importance not only for the two countries Sudan and South Sudan but also for the whole continent of Africa, the Editors have invited leading researchers from the University of Khartoum, the University of Kassala (both in the North) and the University of Juba (in the South) to write on the macroeconomic policies and the macroeconomic policy formation processes of the two countries. Dr. Dirk Hansohm, Macroeconomic Advisory Services Nairobi, Kenya, currently working as a consultant in Khartoum, a former member and collaborator of the Sudan Economy Research Group (SERG) at the University of Bremen, also has contributed to the Unit Three. While the essay on the Sudan considers the macroeconomic consequences of the secession of the South, based on an analysis of the major economic problems and shocks of Sudan since the 1970s, the essay on the South Sudan concentrates on establishing fiscal planning and building fiscal management as cornerstones of macroeconomic stability. Macroeconomic aspects of the two countries are considered by all the authors with having a longer run view in mind (see the Synopsis of the new volume of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook). 

The Unit Three is also a contribution to the understanding of the economics of post-conflict countries in Africa. It came out from the two papers that despite of quite different endowments and initial conditions the two countries have to pursue similar economic policies so as to strengthen the weak economic policy institutions, to redirect production and exports towards diversification, to lay the foundations for macroeconomic stability and fiscal decentralization, and to establish basic social policy systems. As well the huge defense sector in both countries has to be scaled down because of the fiscal burden and the diversion of resources from productive activities, especially agriculture and manufacturing. The abundant natural resources in the two countries could be used more fully by appropriate strategies. New economic strategies and macroeconomic policies have to be based fully on a medium to long-term planning approach, and growth and employment diagnostics approaches are recommended to enhance local development. Professor Karl Wohlmuth introduced the Unit with an essay on New Economic Policies for Sudan and South Sudan and the Need for a Strategic Economic Cooperation. Five elements of a new macroeconomic policy framework were outlined for the two countries, and the contours of a Border States Development Programme (BSDP) were discussed. Such a programme should guide the  development of the now eleven states in the North and in the South along the international border between Sudan and South Sudan. This programme would allow it to develop the abundant natural resources in the area to the benefit of the people in both countries.

 

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Towards A Second Monetary Zone for West Africa: Macroeconomic Developments in West Africa and the Prospects of the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ)

In Unit Three of the new volume of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook, Volume 16, with the title "Macroeconomic Policy Formation in Africa" new macroeconomic and structural developments in West Africa are highlighted. Focus in the Unit Three is mainly on country case studies for Nigeria and Senegal, but in the context of the planned and existing economic and monetary zones in the area. While Senegal is a member of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), Nigeria is part of the WAMZ (West African Monetary Zone) project. The Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) is attempting since many years to harmonize economic policies and to integrate the Francophone  and the Anglophone countries in the area by merging - in the medium to long term - the two monetary zones. Because of the great importance of Nigeria for the success of WAMZ there are essays in the Unit on Nigeria's public expenditure policies in the context of macroeconomic policy formation and about the impact of Nigeria's macroeconomic policies on sectoral development. The two Unit Editors have written an Introductory Essay and have highlighted the strategic framework for a double and then harmonized West African monetary integration process and for a sound and effective macroeconomic policy formation in these countries.

Dr. Osmund O. Uzor is the lead editor of the Unit Three, and Professor Wohlmuth served as the co-editor. Dr. Osmund O. Uzor, a research associate of IWIM, holds a PhD from the University of Bremen; he used his contacts to universities in Nigeria to make this Unit possible. The two Unit Editors used their contacts with WAMA (West African Monetary Agency) and WAMI (West African Monetary Institute) to involve experts for guiding the Editors of the Yearbook on the issue and for writing on the theme of WAMZ. The analysis of the prospects of WAMZ reveals that Maastricht type criteria of convergence (four primary and six secondary convergence criteria) play a role in the foundation of the Second Monetary Zone for West Africa, but that the Euro crisis leads to new reflections among West African policymakers on the modalities, the feasibility and the future perspectives of the project. These issues as related to the Euro crisis are also covered in Unit 1 of the new volume of the Yearbook - with various essays on General Issues of Macroeconomic Policy Formation in Africa (see the synopsis of the new issue of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook).

 

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