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Responding to the Future: Conflict and Environment over Time. Jim Lee American University January 2006. Changing Nations and National Interests. The state system is fragmenting. The number of states in the world is growing due to increasing self-determination.

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Responding to the Future: Conflict and Environment over Time


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changing nations and national interests
Changing Nations and National Interests
  • The state system is fragmenting. The number of states in the world is growing due to increasing self-determination.
  • The global system is strengthening. States are becoming much more interdependent.
  • Demands due to population and development will continue to grow.
  • Stresses on the environment will grow.
  • These demands and stresses, coupled with changing national interests, will be sources for conflict. Conflict today is extremely lethal.
the problem of conflict and environment
The Problem of Conflict and Environment
  • Conflict and environment are age-old problems.
  • Perspectives on the value of the environment change with time: the examples of petroleum and bird guano.
  • There is little systematic research and few tools available for understanding short and long-term conflict.
thinking about conflict and environment
Thinking About Conflict and Environment

Environment and Change in Western North America: A China Lake Story

(see following map)

1. China Lake: A Lake without Water and a Place without Chinese

2. How Lake Manley became Death Valley

3. Native People in the Owens Valley and the Arrival of American Ranchers

  • How LA Drank Lake Owens
  • The Manzanar Japanese Internment Camp in World War II
  • Restoring Lake Owens: Defense meets Ecology
knowledge review
Knowledge Review

Some Major Sources: Singer, Bremer, Gleick, Westing, Homer-Dixon, SIPRI

Their research was used to guide thinking on the construct of the format and the cases of interest. Both mix conflict and environment indicators and issues.

a dichotomous approach to key issues
A Dichotomous Approach to Key Issues
  • 1. Push and Pull
  • 2. Scarcity and Surplus
  • 3. Source and Sink
  • 4. Demand and Supply
  • 5. Animate and Inanimate
  • 6. Finite and Infinite
  • 7. Specie and Habitat
  • 8. General and Specific
  • 9. Sovereign and Non-sovereign
approach to case studies
Approach to Case Studies

Time periods (more discrete periods are also possible)

  • Ancient (to year 0)
  • Middle (year 0 to 1900)
  • Modern (1900 on)

Build an Initial Inventory of Exemplar or Seed Cases based on Type

  • Use three dichotomous types to examine six initial case studies per time period.
  • Variable-oriented case study indicators that are comparable across cases
  • Create a kind of structured chronology.
the ice inventory
The ICE Inventory
  • 145 Case reports reported online
  • All coded on the basis of 16 categories
  • Coding categories are almost all delimited
  • Coding categories are mostly nominal and ordinal
the ice coding categories
The ICE Coding Categories
  • a. Basic Attributes
  • 1. Abstract
  • 2. Description
  • 3. Duration
  • 4. Location5. Actors
  • b. Environment Attributes
  • 6. Type of Environmental Problem
  • 7. Type of Habitat
  • 8. Act and Harm Sites
  • c. Conflict Attributes9. Type of Conflict
  • 10. Level of Conflict11. Fatality Level of Dispute (military and civilian fatalities)
  • d. Conflict Environment Overlap12. Environment-Conflict Link and Dynamics13. Level of Strategic Interest14. Outcome of Dispute
  • e. Related Information and Sources15. Related Cases16. Relevant Literature and Websites
what the data reveals one way breakouts
What the Data Reveals: One Way Breakouts
  • An Increase of Cases with End of Cold War
21 st century trends in conflict and environment and management
21st Century Trends in Conflict and Environment and Management
  • 1. General Resources Demand
  • 2. Specific Resources Demand
  • 3. Pollution as Conflict Cause
  • 4. Localization of Conflict
  • 5. The Tension Belt
  • 6. Managing the Two Types of Tension Belt Cases