Editorial

  • Jiří Pánek Palacky University Olomouc

Abstract

You now have the opportunity to read the seventh issue of the Development, Environment and Foresight journal, published by the Department of Development Studies, Palacký University, Olomouc, Czech Republic.
The journal is among others indexed by the ERIH PLUS database. The European Reference Index for the Humanities and the Social Sciences (ERIH PLUS) was created and developed by European researchers under the coordination of the Standing Committee for the Humanities of the European Science Foundation (ESF). The ERIH lists, which initially covered only humanities disciplines, were first published by ESF in 2008, while revised lists were made available in 2011-2012. In 2014, responsibility for the maintenance and operation of ERIH was transferred to the NSD – Norwegian Centre for Research Data. The reference index at NSD is called ERIH PLUS in order to indicate that it has been extended to include the social sciences.
This issue was originally intended as a monothematic focusing on failed states. After several months of preparation we had to change our plans, therefore the delay, for which we sincerely apologise.
The first paper in this issue is authored by Pavel Přikryl from University of Economics, Prague and focuses on why peacekeeping in South Sudan failed. The single case study identifies five major reasons why the UN failed to accomplish the priorities it stipulated in Resolution 1996 (2011). The theoretical part of the paper briefly discusses issues concerning the taxonomy, definition and quantification of failed states and then analyses theoretical concepts and typologies from extreme cases of failed statehood. The empirical part examines the situation in South Sudan at the onset of the mandate and again five years later, looking at the social, economic and political dimensions. With the use of the Fragile States Index the paper attempts to empirically compare the progress achieved in South Sudan. The last part concludes that the UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan failed due to various operational errors, such as delays in staffing, insufficient equipment for the military component, ill-conceived planning and mishandling of the political crisis in 2013. The paper also focuses attention on the lack of theoretical concepts with which to exclusively analyse extreme cases of failed statehood.
The second paper presented by Tomáš Šmíd and Alexandra Šmídová, both from Masaryk University Brno, Czech Republic aims at Donetsk People´s Republic as a de facto state. The political crisis in Ukraine, which grew into an armed conflict in Donbass in 2014, was one of the reasons for the emergence of secessionist entities in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. This study deals with the concept of the de facto state. The authors apply this phenomenon to the case study of the Donetsk People's Republic. This paper largely relies on the theoretical framework of the concepts of state failure by authors Scott Pegg, David Lynch, Pål Kolstø and others. They also use the Montevideo convention qualifications. The authors have used data sourced from respondents living in the territory of the Donbass to answer their research questions.
The third paper of this issue comes from Jan Záhořík from the University of West Bohemia, Pilsen, Czech Republic. The paper is titled Local and International Aspects of State-failure, dysfunctionality and (in)stability in the Horn of Africa. The Horn of Africa consists of countries that have longstanding experience with dysfunctional governments, civil wars, inter-state wars, political turmoil and coups d’états. Since 1991, many studies have discussed and analyzed levels of state-failure, with a major focus on Africa. Numerous authors have presented case studies which argue that state-failure does not necessarily mean chaos and disorder as it gives space to non-state actors and local forms of government and administration. However, it seems that little attention has been paid to the international aspects which contribute to or even prolong state- failure or dysfunctionality. This study deals with the internal and international aspects of state-failure, dysfunctionality and (in)stability in the Horn of Africa. The main argument is based on the presumption that due to regional political issues, the path from state failure to recovery can be complicated by the interests of regional powers, primarily in this case Ethiopia, whose hegemonic role in the region is indisputable and, as the main ally of the USA in the Horn of Africa it is supported by that superpower in its role in the “War on Terror”.
The last full paper is authored by Mateřina Hradilová from the Palacky University in Olomouc and Ondřej Svoboda from Charles University Prague (both Czech Republic). Paper titled Trade policy as a tool for the sustainable use of oceans aims at oceans as fundamental for the survival and well-being of people. Nevertheless, human behaviour in marine ecosystems has put oceans at risk. As the United Nations Agenda 2030 points out, the main challenges related to the sustainable use of oceans are increasing pollution, overfishing and loss of biodiversity. This paper discusses how trade policy can serve as a tool for the sustainable use of oceans. First, it provides an introduction to current trends in the world fishing industry and related sustainable development challenges. Subsequently, it describes the ongoing discussions related to fishery subsidies in the WTO. Finally, this paper provides an analysis of the commitments to sustainable fisheries embodied in EU and US FTAs. The conclusion suggests that actions are needed on multilateral, regional and bilateral levels. Negotiations in the WTO are in their final stage. If they are successfully concluded, they will provide an important multilateral framework. The current US approach represented by the USMCA has a larger scope than the EU FTAs as regards the provisions on trade and the sustainable use of oceans. Fishery subsidies, facilitation of free trade in sustainably managed fish products and sustainable management of fisheries have been identified as the key areas where the EU FTAs can be further strengthened.
The fifth and sixth paper are book reviews from Jiří Hájek (Palacký University Olomouc, Czech Republic), who reviewed the book The Water Will Come authored by Jeff Goodell; and from Kateřina Hradilová (Palacký University Olomouc, Czech Republic), who reviewed the book Sustaining Prosperity, Nature and Wellbeing: What Do the Indicators Tell Us? From Peter Bartelmus.
We hope you enjoy this issue and we are looking forward to the next one. We would like to motivate and invite other authors to contribute to the knowledge and expertise in the areas of development, environment and foresight by sending their submissions to the editorial board of the DEF journal. The aim of the journal is to cultivate academic discussion in the scope of the journal as well as beyond its borders.
 
Thank you for your support
 
Jiří Pánek // managing editor
Published
Nov 15, 2019
How to Cite
PÁNEK, Jiří. Editorial. Development, Environment and Foresight, [S.l.], v. 4, n. 1, p. 1-3, nov. 2019. ISSN 2336-6621. Available at: <http://def-journal.eu/index.php/def/article/view/56>. Date accessed: 06 dec. 2019.