Features Articles

Disaster is like everyday life, but more so.” —Rebecca Solnit


By Jennifer Howk  |  April 17, 2014


The lawful Government of Hawaii was overthrown without the drawing of a sword or the firing of a shot by a process which, it may be safely asserted, is directly traceable to and dependent for its success upon the agency of the United States acting through its diplomatic and naval representatives…By an act of war, committed with the participation of a diplomatic representative of the United States and without authority of Congress, the Government of a feeble but friendly and confiding people has been overthrown. A substantial wrong has thus been done which a due regard for our national character as well as the rights of the injured people requires we should endeavor to repair.

By Noelani Goodyear-Kaʻōpua  |  April 16, 2014

Imagine subsistence hunters in Brazil, or farmers in the Andean highlands, or fishing communities in Cambodia. Each of these geographically disparate groups is among the indigenous peoples of the world whose livelihoods, cultures, and identities are intimately tied to the land on which they have lived for generations. However, they do not only share this tie to their traditional land. Indigenous peoples’ rights to their land, territories, and natural resources have often been historically ignored or neglected when large-scale development or conservation activities, such as hydropower dams or protected areas, were being planned and implemented.

By Adrienne McKeehan, Theresa Buppert  |  April 16, 2014

After a long period of relative quiescence, indigenous movements in Latin America have mobilized. A wave of indigenous protests swept through the Andean countries beginning in the 1980s and made its presence felt as far north as Mexico. Indigenous groups have blocked roads, occupied buildings, and held mass rallies to let their demands be known. They have also entered the electoral arena in unprecedented numbers. Some indigenous groups and leaders have allied with non-indigenous parties, lending their support to the parties in exchange for candidacies or policy concessions. Other indigenous groups have opted to form their own political parties.

By RAÚL MADRID  |  March 23, 2014

Indigenous peoples have been marred for centuries by the incredulous theft of knowledge they obtained, and even resources they use. The thieves are superior, more developed powers that jealously protect the rights to knowledge that is not rightfully theirs. They then refuse to recognize that the true ownership of such precious information belongs to Native Peoples. Indigenous knowledge is stolen without the slightest consideration to the powerful implications that it comes equipped with. The moral repercussions behind such an unethical system leads to loss of Native culture and sustainability and a shift from using Native knowledge and resources for social needs to profit generation.

By Shahrukh Khan  |  March 23, 2014


By Dr. Hatem Bazian  |  March 23, 2014

To most people the Arctic is a distant realm, almost another world, inhabited by polar bears. They may even think the frigid landmasses and icy seas of the Arctic are irrelevant to daily life further south.

By Jens Stoltenberg  |  September 30, 2013

When we are young we see change as a sweeping phenomenon; a roaring avalanche of paradigm shifts and situational changes that overwhelm the status quo into relinquishing its unjust usurpation of power. Yet such ideas do not rest far from the line demarcating dreams and reality. As we grow into our understanding of power dynamics, we realize that there are times when the stability of the status quo allows for more advancement in gender equality than the rush of chaotic change. It can be argued that the Arab world is unfortunately an example of such a phenomenon at this stage of its spring of revolutions. Though gender equity in the Arab world saw significant advancement in the last 30 years, commentators worry about the effect the Arab Spring may have on that.

By Ahmed Younis  |  August 1, 2013

Switzerland & the Future of Elections

The Internet has had a profound impact on the way contemporary democracies work. Neither processes, such as electoral campaigns, nor actors, such as candidates, political parties or movements, are immune to the myriad challenges and opportunities offered by new media. The same goes for various fundamental institutions of democracy, such as parliaments and governments, which have adopted Internet-based strategies for both internal and external information and communication needs.

By Alexander H. Trechsel, Urs Gasser  |  April 17, 2013

I am currently entering my 11th year in the once fledgling field of “mobiles for development.” The story of “m4d,” as it is fondly known, and the countless stories of how mobiles have impacted the lives of hundreds of millions of people throughout the developing world, are ones that are closely tied to my own.

I would like to share some of those stories with you, along with a few highlights from my own journey—lessons learned, the impact of mobile phones on the lives of ordinary (and not so ordinary) Africans, the background to my own FrontlineSMS project, and how mobile technology fosters “democratized development” across the world. But let us start at the beginning.

By Ken Banks  |  January 31, 2013