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Big Data and open source intelligence – A game-changer for counter-terrorism?

Big Data and open source intelligence – A game-changer for counter-terrorism?

Security, Defense & Terrorism

The threat from terrorism continues to present a clear and present danger to many communitiesacross the world. The suicide bombingsin Turkey on 28th June which killed 41 people at the Ataturk international airport in Istanbul, and the series of deadly bombings in Baghdad and Iraq during July, the string...

19 Jul 2016

The Need to Look More Closely at Iran

The Need to Look More Closely at Iran

Foreign Policy & International Relations

In a recent Expert Analysis published by TRENDS, Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield and Dr. Ramesh Sepehrrad presented the view that the USA government and policy analysts are misreading Iran.  They explained there is a long held belief that Iran will change, that the reformist figures in the country seek to,...

12 Jul 2016

The Fragile State Index in 2016

The Fragile State Index in 2016

Peace & Security

Introduction The Fragile State Index (FSI) for 2016 has just been released by the Fund for Peace (FFP). It is their twelfth annual report. The FSI shows a colour coated global map indicating state stability. The overall impression one would get looking at this year’s map is that the...

12 Jul 2016

Lessons from the Orlando Attack for Defining Terrorism

Lessons from the Orlando Attack for Defining Terrorism

Constructions of Terrorism

In the aftermath of the mass shooting at an Orlando, Florida nightclub this past June, analysts and politicians alike were quick to deem the attack “terrorism.” Indeed, the perpetrator, Omar Mateen, claimed he was acting for Daesh/Islamic State in phone calls to an emergency number (911), a television station...

12 Jul 2016

The Global Financial Stability Review

The Global Financial Stability Review

Global Economy

Overview The outlook for the global economy has deteriorated causing an increase in financial market volatility this year. More uncertain global growth prospects and declines in inflation expectations could produce sustained economic and financial weakness as well as intensified concerns about global financial stability. The IMF pointed out in...

28 Jun 2016

The Group of 20 Limps Along

The Group of 20 Limps Along

Global Economy

At the height of the global financial crisis in 2008, the Group of 20 (G20) was elevated from a group of finance ministers to a heads of state meeting. The G20 won plaudits for effectuating a coordinated response that helped to mitigate the crisis and for seizing the opportunity...

28 Jun 2016

Tomorrow never comes: Why Africa’s Economic ‘rise’ may yet fall flat

Tomorrow never comes: Why Africa’s Economic ‘rise’ may yet fall flat

Global Economy

Since it (in)famously dubbed Africa the ‘hopeless continent’ the Economist has undergone something of an epiphany. In the intervening period the magazine has regularly eulogised about Africa’s performance and potential culminating in its rechristening in a 2013 special report as the ‘hopeful continent’. This volte-face epitomizes the seemingly unquenchable...

21 Jun 2016

The Kurds and the Fight Against Daesh

The Kurds and the Fight Against Daesh

Constructions of Terrorism

Recent bomb attacks in Turkey draw attention to the destabilizing effect of the ongoing conflict in Syria and Iraq.  Retired four-star U.S. Army General and former head of the CIA David Petraeus has called the Syrian civil war a, “geopolitical Chernobyl—spewing instability and extremism over the region and the...

14 Jun 2016

UAE Economic Diversification Record

UAE Economic Diversification Record

Global Economy

After the global oil price has fallen almost 70 % since mid-2014, oil exporting countries have felt the impact of the lower prices on growth rates, trade figures and public finances.  Despite the negative impacts of the fall in oil prices, the UAE Government remains positive about the country’s...

14 Jun 2016

Next Steps for the Introduction of VAT

Next Steps for the Introduction of VAT

Economy

Introduction The introduction of Value-added Tax (VAT) will occur in 2018 across the GCC.  It is a popular misconception to see the current low crude oil prices and the implementation of VAT as an example of cause and effect.  In fact, the GCC carried out extensive investigations into a...

30 May 2016

Building Human Capital

Building Human Capital

Education

Innovation and human capital are intertwined. In a knowledge and innovation economy, the greatest resource a country has is manifested in its workforce. Improving the qualifications of the population by providing education, training and continuous professional development significantly enhance the economic prospects.  As described by Theodore William Schultz, an...

30 May 2016

Water Security in the GCC

Water Security in the GCC

Environment & Security

The UN’s Water Security and the Global Water Agenda (2013), says that water security encapsulates multifaceted and interconnected challenges. It illustrates the centrality of water for all forms of security, whether related to more traditional forms of geo-political military security, or newer ones such as sustainability, development and human...

17 May 2016