Articles

Academic articles by CFR fellows and experts.

The Rules of Surfing

Authors: Terra Lawson-Remer and Alisa Valderrama
Council on Foreign Relations

This study illustrates how the informal rules of surfing interact with formal state law to inadvertently facilitate collective action for environmental conservation by increasing the individual benefits for local surfers to organize against environmental threats, by utilizing ethnographic fieldwork and a game theory model.

China’s Environmental Future: The Power of the People

Author: Elizabeth C. Economy
McKinsey Quarterly

The costs of China's deep and enduring environmental crisis are growing, yet Beijing's response to the country's environmental challenges has been far from sufficient. Increasingly, the Chinese people are pushing the government to do more to protect the environment, and Beijing must rise to the occasion, says Elizabeth Economy.

See more in China; Energy and Environment; Environmental Policy; Politics and Strategy

China-Korea Relations: Seeking Alignment on North Korean Policy

Authors: Scott A. Snyder and See-won Byun
Comparative Connections

Escalating tensions on the peninsula due to North Korea's recent provocations motivate Presidents Xi Jinping and Park Geun-hye to closely coordinate policies toward the North. However, Beijing's shifty stance on sanctions, an increase in Sino-DPRK economic exchanges, and the obstacles to China-South Korea-Japan trilateral cooperation impede North Korea policy alignment between Beijing and Seoul. Still, the willingness of both leaders to improve bilateral relations offers a silver lining, explain CFR's Scott Snyder and See-won Byun of George Washington University.

See more in China; South Korea; Defense and Security

The Dunkirk Diplomat

Author: Benn Steil
History Today

Benn Steil's article in the June 2013 edition of History Today takes a critical look at John Maynard Keynes's performance as a diplomat during World War II, concluding that Britain had made a mistake sending him to Washington. His temperament and overinvestment in his personal legacy resulted in Britain paying a high political and economic price for American financial assistance.

See more in United States; Economics; History and Theory of International Relations

Sexual Violence and Inequality in India

Authors: Isobel Coleman and Julia Knight
Política Exterior

As measured by life outcomes, India does not value the lives of its sons as highly as it values the lives of its daughters. Moreover, it allows sexual violence to go unpunished and its victims undefended, whether on the city streets, in villages, in police stations, or in the courts. A powerful impetus for change exists in India, but the challenge of closing the gap between calls for reform and true long-term change looms large.

See more in India; Women; Human Rights

Law and Ethics for Autonomous Weapon Systems: Why a Ban Won’t Work and How the Laws of War Can

Authors: Matthew C. Waxman and Kenneth Anderson

Grounded in a realistic assessment of technology, Matthew C. Waxman and Kenneth Anderson outline a practical alternative with which to evaluate the use of autonomous weaponry that incorporates codes of conduct based on traditional legal and ethical principles governing weapons and warfare.

See more in United States; Drones; International Law

The Foreign Policy Consequences of Trade: China’s Commercial Relations with Africa and Latin America, 1992--2006

Authors: Sarah E. Kreps and Gustavo A. Flores-Macias
Journal of Politics

No strings attached? Even if not part of a purposeful plan on the part of China, its growing trade ties with countries in Africa and Latin America has important foreign policy consequences, according to Sarah Kreps and Gustavo A. Flores-Macias. The article shows that in the last two decades, the more these countries have traded with China, the more likely they were to align with it in international forums such as the UN.

See more in China; Global; Trade

Egypt’s Financial High Noon

Author: Isobel Coleman
Foreign Policy

Isobel Coleman writes that while it is widely recognized that food and fuel subsidies in Egypt are expensive and inefficient, Egyptian leaders do not want to touch the political third rail of subsidy reform. But they also realize that the country's fiscal situation is untenable without it. Sooner or later, serious subsidy reform is inevitable, and a well-planned process is preferable to the alternative.

See more in Egypt; Economic Development