INEF researchers publish their research results in national and international academic journals or books as well as in the Institute's own formats such as the INEF Report. In collaboration with three other German peace research institutes (BICC / HSFK / IFSH), INEF also publishes the annual Peace Report. Furthermore, since 2015 INEF has been publishing the series Global Trends. Analysis together with the Development and Peace Foundation (sef:).

New Publications

Vüllers, Johannes

Revolutions and Constitutional Crisis

Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics (2021)

Revolutionary actions and constitutional crises are closely linked. However, research mainly looks at the two phenomena as distinct from each other. While studies on revolutionary actions are interested in the agency and the impact of the actions on the country’s institutions, legal research focuses on the constitution itself. The separation of the two strands leads to a limited understanding of their dynamics and complexity. What do we know about the relationship between revolutionary actions and constitutional crisis, and vice versa? The first question is how revolutionary actions trigger constitutional crisis, defined as a moment in which decision makers are unwilling or unable to manage the societal conflicts within the confinement of the constitutionally provided boundaries. Different types of revolutionary behavior—such as elite-led military coups, civil wars, and nonviolent resistance movements—trigger constitutional crises in many cases. They can lead to a new constitution with diverse implications for the political system. Whether the opposition or the old regime prevails in the constitutional crisis is a question of the power resources of both parties to the conflict. In some cases, the opposition movements succeed in making the political system more democratic. However, there are also cases where the constitutional crisis ultimately leads to more power for the ruling class.

Vüllers, Johannes / Hellmeier, Sebastian

Does Counter‐Mobilization Contain Right‐Wing Populist Movements? Evidence from Germany

European Journal of Political Research (2021) Online First

Right‐wing populist (RWP) movements have been on the rise in Western democracies. Outside of party politics, such movements regularly organize demonstrations against political elites and minority groups. At the same time, civil society coalitions have mobilized against these movements. Yet we know little about the effect of counter‐demonstrations on RWP protest activities. We derive competing theoretical expectations from previous work. On the one hand, counter‐mobilization reduces mobilization because the original movement is less likely to achieve its goals (expected utility/costs). On the other hand, clashes and standoffs between opposing movements facilitate mobilization through polarization and anger (identity/emotions). We empirically analyze movement–countermovement dynamics using a new city‐level event dataset on street protests by the German Pegida movement and its opponents. In our quantitative analysis, we investigate how counter‐mobilization is associated with the onset of Pegida protests, their intensity in terms of participant numbers, and their demobilization. Counter‐mobilization does not prevent protest onset, but large counter‐demonstrations are associated with larger subsequent Pegida protests, and violence against Pegida supporters reduces the likelihood that they will stop protesting.

Sondermann, Elena / Ulbert, Cornelia

Transformation through ‘Meaningful’ Partnership? SDG 17 as Metagovernance Norm and Its Global Health Implementation

Politics and Governance (2021), 9: 1, 152-163

SDG 17 calls for the international community to “strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development,” emphasizing the role of multi-stakeholder partnerships for achieving the SDGs. Policy documents are replete with statements on the necessity of ‘meaningful’ engagement, especially with civil society—without clarifying what ‘meaningful’ stands for. In this article, we develop an analytical approach to partnership as a form and norm of metagovernance. Partnership as a metanorm is about the roles and relations of different sets of actors. We suggest operationalizing the concept of partnership according to different levels of accountability and participation, allowing for a gradual enhancement of the quality of partnership in terms of ‘meaningfulness.’ We apply our analytical model to the Global Action Plan for Healthy Lives and Well‐Being for All (GAP), a fairly new initiative by health and development agencies to accelerate progress towards the health-related targets of the 2030 Agenda. By investigating the development and the early phase of implementing the GAP, we empirically assess if and how the notion of partnership envisioned in the GAP qualifies as ‘meaningful’ with respect to civil society engagement. From our empirical example, we infer lessons for attaining normative standards of ‘meaningfulness’ and highlight implications for future research on partnerships.


Scheper, Christian / Gördemann, Johanna

Human Rights and Corporate Reinsurance: From Ensuring Rights to Insuring Risks

New Political Economy (2021) Online First

With the aim of grounding the analysis of private transnational human rights governance, the article examines how a European reinsurance company links its human rights policy to its core business of underwriting risks in the case of Belo Monte, a large hydroelectric dam in the Brazilian Amazon. Based on the current international regulatory framework, the global political economy of reinsurance is becoming a constitutive element of human rights governance. Conceptualising underwriting as a social practice, we observe how human rights norms are translated into the corporate form of risks. This process goes beyond questions of norm compliance and involves practices of valuation and boundary-drawing based on the underwriter’s competences and background knowledge about reinsurance markets, value chains and corporate hierarchies. We conclude with a critique of private governance as an institutional pillar of the human rights system that rests on business rationales rather than lending institutional power to rights-holders.


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