Libya and the COVID-19 Lifecycle: From Distraction to Dissidence

Libya and the COVID-19 Lifecycle: From Distraction to Dissidence

COVID-19 has changed the world and the way we live it, establishing something of a “new normal” as states and societies battle the pandemic and learn to accommodate its multidimensional effects. For Libyans’ living in the midst of conflict, normality and a new normal are difficult to determine.

What reform agenda is needed for the future direction of the World Trade Organization?

What reform agenda is needed for the future direction of the World Trade Organization?

Twenty-five years after its creation (as a successor to the GATT [General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade], 1947-1995), and following many years of paralysis, the stakes for reform are high. This is particularly evident during the post Covid-19 recovery period, as the pandemic exposes the structural vulnerabilities of globalised economies.

Pandemic brings urgency to transform the world’s food system now

Pandemic brings urgency to transform the world’s food system now

Africa has not been spared by the COVID-19 emergency. Beyond the immediate health effects, the pandemic threatens the world’s already fragile food system, with particularly severe consequences in Africa. The Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity believes that the solution lies in small-scale food producers and farmer-managed seed systems.

Visit of Josep Borrell Fontelles, Vice-President of the European Commission and Janez Lenarčič, European Commissioner to Ethiopia

Fit for purpose: The EU’s role in global health in the era of COVID-19

Although COVID-19 is having a significant impact on the economy, politics and health, it did not cause a fundamental change in the rules of the game when it comes to the EU’s limited role as a global health player. The block needs to address persistent coordination issues between the EU and its member states – as well as across EU institutions – if it wishes to enhance its effectiveness and credibility in this arena.

Covid-19 and local humanitarian action: five emerging trends

Covid-19 and local humanitarian action: five emerging trends

The Humanitarian Policy Group’s (HPG) of ODI is launching a new mapping tool which is capturing some of the changes that COVID19 has forced in real-time. Using an online survey and a review of publicly available sources, it documents how COVID19 is triggering change in the humanitarian system towards more local humanitarian action, local leadership and partnerships between international and national responders.

International funding for peacebuilding: Will COVID-19 change or reinforce existing trends?

International funding for peacebuilding: Will COVID-19 change or reinforce existing trends?

COVID-19 has exacerbated factors influencing international support for peacebuilding, including a more volatile geopolitical order and changes in domestic priorities in donor countries. Peacebuilding and a conflict-sensitive approach have not yet been at the forefront of the international responses to COVID-19, undermining attempts to ‘build back better’ in a world where negative conflict dynamics are increasingly apparent.

The AU-EU Summit didn’t prove immune to COVID-19 – but that may be a blessing in disguise

The AU-EU Summit didn’t prove immune to COVID-19 – but that may be a blessing in disguise

This year was supposed to be crucial for Africa-Europe relations, culminating in the sixth AU-EU Summit, scheduled for 28 and 29 October in Brussels. But then COVID-19 happened. After a long palaver, a decision was finally taken: the summit will be postponed to 2021, although a date still needs to be fixed. Geert Laporte explains why postponing may not be such a bad thing.

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Covid-19 and financial access: supporting low-income businesses and households in Africa

Financial access in Africa has been on the rise in the last decade. It has a critical role to play in increasing the resilience of households and supporting their livelihoods. Maintaining this role is vital to tackle welfare and income losses stemming from the Covid-19-sparked economic crisis.

Building Back Better Social Contracts - International Cooperation with Fragile MENA Countries in the COVID-19 Context

Building Back Better Social Contracts – International Cooperation with Fragile MENA Countries in the COVID-19 Context

Governments in the Middle East and in North Africa (MENA) are tackling the pandemic in different ways, many challenged by weak social systems and growing societal frustrations. In relatively prosperous (middle-income) countries – such as Lebanon, Egypt and Iraq – leaders have used the pandemic as an excuse to suppress justified protests at their lack of accountability and failure to provide basic services. For international cooperation, which supports the functioning of legitimate, accountable governments and resilient societies, this poses a critical challenge – as the case of Lebanon currently illuminates.