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Since 2010, Ireland has followed a well-trodden path of extending the project of welfare reform beyond the activation of claimants to the ‘double’ activation of the organisations and frontline workers responsible for implementing active labour market policies on the ground. This chapter takes a closer look at ‘double activation’ as an analytical lens, and why the concept holds significance beyond describing the conjunction between the two tracks of welfare reform. What is it about the parallel unfolding of governance reforms of delivery organisations that is of wider interest to the shape of activation reform? The chapter also introduces the Governing Activation in Ireland study underpinning this book: the research design and how the study differed from previous studies of the impacts of marketisation on the frontline delivery of employment services. The chapter concludes with a consideration of the underlying conceptual linkages between workfare and marketisation, drawing attention to the theories of motivation they share and the ways in which they each involve a normative commitment to the commodification of claimants.
This chapter explains the return of the Tatmadaw at the helm of government in Myanmar as well as the military’s involvement in COVID-19 management and exploitation to preserve its interests. One element that previous studies have not yet discussed to explain the phenomenon is the influence of doctrinal belief of the Tatmadaw, which is heavily inspired by the developmental guardianship idea. The developmental guardianship thinking has driven the Tatmadaw’s return to politics as the military aims to maintain its centrality. Moreover, the global outbreak of COVID-19 galvanized the military’s position as the developmental guardian and justified expansive military involvement in non-defence affairs. The discussion on the role of the doctrinal element, in this case the developmental guardianship paradigm, is this chapter’s main contribution to the contemporary literature on military and politics in Myanmar.
Although Article 9 of Japan’s constitution states that “land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be sustained”, yet, Tokyo maintains one of the most capable military forces in the Asia-Pacific. The chapter evaluates the enhanced visible profile that the late Abe Shinzo’s administration sought in deploying the JSDF overseas on defence diplomacy and HADR missions to persuade and in the process, (re-)acclimatize the public to its important existence. The chapter also examines publicity campaigns that attempted to justify and endear the JSDF to the public. The focus on ‘endearing’ the JSDF to the public through popular anime cartoon characters for instance appears somewhat unique in the region, contrasting with concern about the authoritarian nature of military control over past Japanese politics or its role in developmental societies. At the same time, this more light-hearted focus on cartoon characters co-exists with a serious underlying message that the JSDF is increasingly necessary as the regional security environment deteriorates rapidly.
This introductory chapter situates the case study of Ireland that follows in the context of wider international welfare reforms. These include the social policy turn away from human capital development approaches towards a more demanding, workfare-oriented activation model, and the creation of quasi-markets in employment services. The chapter reviews these developments internationality while offering an analysis of the distinction between workfare and human capital development approaches to activation, as well as the variety of quasi-market models.
This book explores civil-military relations in Asia. With chapters on individual countries in the region, it provides a comprehensive account of the range of contemporary Asian practices under conditions of abridged democracy, soft authoritarianism or complete totalitarianism. Through its analysis, the book argues that civil-military relations in Asia ought to be examined under the concept of ‘Asian military evolutions’. It demonstrates that while Asian militaries have tried to incorporate standard, Western-derived frameworks of civil-military relations, it has been necessary to adapt such frameworks to suit local circumstances. The book reveals how this has in turn led to creative fusions and novel changes in making civil-military relations an asset to furthering national security objectives.
The authors, whose trainings include as group analytic psychotherapists, use the theoretical framework of group analysis to facilitate experiential small and median groups for students on trainings in individual psychodynamic psychotherapy. Even though in group analytic practice it would usually be a definite no, the authors found themselves debating whether members who revealed they were a couple in the past could in fact be together in a group. This discussion prompted the authors to reflect closely on their co-facilitator relationship, causing them to consider what they understood by ‘couple’.
It offered up an opportunity (previously unconscious) to explore the binary fixing of conductors as male/female and heterosexual, and whether such fixing may be a defence by the group, including the group conductors, against allowing and exploring a more fluid, nuanced exploration of gender and sexuality. The authors propose that instead of small experiential groups, co-conducted median groups may offer a richer opportunity for such exploration.
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This book assesses how the practice of contracting-out public employment services via competitive tendering and Payment-by-Results is transforming welfare-to-work in Ireland.
It offers Ireland’s introduction of a welfare-to-work market as a case study that speaks to wider international debates in social and public policy about the role of market governance in intensifying the turn towards more regulatory and conditional welfare models on the ground.
It draws on unprecedented access to, and extensive survey and interview research with, frontline employment services staff, combined with in-depth interviews with policy officials, organisational managers and jobseekers participating in activation.
This chapter concentrates on addressing the following question: Is the Philippine military socially, politically and economically embedded to the point that civil–military relations cannot be viewed as a gap between civilian and military elements? It argues that the shift of the military’s original reformist stance favouring democratic civilian control towards a more politicized disposition can be explained by two interrelated structural factors. The first is the presence of informal institutions such as the militarization of civilian structures and the traditional reliance on the military regarding security matters. Their competing, substitutive and latent nature profoundly provide political autonomy to the military despite the presence of formal civilian control guaranteed by laws and institutions. The second factor is the erosion of the country’s democratic regime instigated by a populist leader. The chapter discusses how the interaction of these two structural factors influenced the current civil–military imbalance based on different sources, including an original survey of members of the Philippine strategic community comprising uniformed personnel from the country’s security sector as well as government officials, researchers and academics representing the civilian sector. This non-random elite survey reveals the polarized perceptions and evaluations of the respondents on the state of civil–military relations under Duterte.
This chapter explores the political roles played by the Korean People’s Army (KPA) in North Korea. It addresses the main gap between extensive political roles by the KPA and its political weakness and continued loyalty to the Kim family rule by utilizing the Asian military evolution concept. It argues that North Korea is a patrimonial political system in which the single dictator is positioned above the partisan and ideological authorities and exercises unchecked political power. The analysis focuses on how the KPA played the regime’s security role in three of the most important stages that defined North Korea’s political path: (1) Kim Il-sung’s power struggle and creation of patrimonial authority in the 1950s–60s; (2) Kim Jong-il’s Songun politics in the late 1990s; and (3) family succession to Kim Jong-un and his political reshuffle since 2011. The analysis illustrates that the rise and fall of the KPA’s political role does not necessarily reflect its political power position. Rather, it merely reflects the dictator’s ruling method of choice – either ruling the country through the party institutions or through military force – for regime survival.
This chapter argues that there is no civil–military gap – a key concern in civil–military relations scholarship – in Singapore, transcending the civil–military problematique. While the military naturally plays a different role, it does not occupy a different world. Singapore presents a curious case of how its military evolution has been embedded within the operational role of the SAF as opposed to a changing relationship between different worlds. While this edited volume highlights Asian militaries can indeed slowly evolve to defuse disputes between themselves and civilian leaders within Asian democracies to achieve developmental and security goals more synergistically, Singapore is different from this novel conception of the study of civil–military relations. The SAF was already structured at its inception to minimize such disputes and maximize efficiency in reaching national goals. It was an institution designed to fit in with, and not stand apart from, civilian governance. The influence of Singapore’s colonial legacy and how the SAF is embedded socially and politically situates the argument. The chapter concludes by emphasizing that Singapore’s civil–military relations need to be understood in terms of the ‘everyday’ transition between military and civilian roles by members of the SAF.