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13 June 2018
RCSD Post Fieldwork Seminar: The Role of Karen Policy-Networks in the Myanmar Peace Process
 
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Regional Center for Social Sciences and Sustainable Development (RCSD) invites you to participate in a RCSD Post Fieldwork Seminar:

The Role of Karen Policy-Networks in the Myanmar Peace Process

Presenter: Ms. Stasha Malcolm, M.A in Social Science (Development Studies)  

Commentator: Lect. Dr. Mukdawan Sakboon
(Department of Social Sciences and Development)

Moderator: Mr. Elliot Lodge, M.A in Social Science (Development Studies)

Wednesday 13 June 2018, 10.00 a.m.
Subaltern Meeting room, basement floor, Operational Building, Faculty of Social Sciences


Abstract: 
Myanmar’s current peace process is facilitated through the National Ceasefire Agreement (NCA), agreed to by the central government, the Tatmadaw, and ten ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) including the Karen National Union (KNU). Although not inclusively representative of all Karen people, the KNU has become accepted as a de facto government within Karen State. Political tension has led to factionalism within the KNU itself, creating a small-scale policy subsystem in which various actors attempt to raise their policy concerns at the national level. Current literature discusses Karen politics as they are happening within top-level negotiations on the NCA, often overlooking the impact of policy opponents that do not have direct access to the negotiation space.

The purpose of this study is to demonstrate how policy opponents in Karen state attempt to impact national level negotiations through advocacy within small-scale policy-networks. These policy-networks advocate for differing imaginaries as part of an existing discursive structure. Within the scope of this study, the two primary imaginaries discussed are of politics and development, which are based on shared actor perception and used to inform advocacy tactics. The research question considered is as follows: What is the role of Karen policy-networks in Myanmar’s national peace process? This question is explored through semi-structured interviews with four high-level Karen policy-network actors, primarily from the CSO sector, and one Karen political analyst.

About the presenter:
Stasha Malcolm graduated from California State University, Chico with a B.A. in International Relations. During her undergraduate career she spent a year studying at Chiang Mai University, leading to her interest in Southeast Asia and regional politics. Following her internship at the U.S. Consulate General, Chiang Mai, Stasha was recommended to enroll in the M.A. program at RCSD and is now completing her second year of studies.


:: Your attendance is highly appreciated ::