Projekt

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Brokering political and economic transitions in South Asia’s periphery

Gesuchsteller/in Korf Benedikt
Nummer 140728
Förderungsinstrument Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)
Forschungseinrichtung Geographisches Institut Universität Zürich
Hochschule Universität Zürich – ZH
Hauptdisziplin Human- und Wirtschaftsgeografie, Humanökologie
Beginn/Ende 01.07.2012 - 31.10.2015
Bewilligter Betrag 182'848.00
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Keywords (6)

political brokerage; violent conflict; political transition; religion and politics; Catholic Church; South Asia

Lay Summary (Englisch)

Lead
Lay summary

This research project investigates the role of political brokers and brokerage processes in the context of violent conflict. The focus will be on religious figures and their brokerage work by looking into the social and political field within which these brokers have assumed their brokerage functions. Thereby, we will be able to trace the capacities of religious figures to act in situations of political transitions during and after civil wars. Empirically, the project studies the social practices of Catholic priests as brokers across combat lines during the Sri Lankan civil war and their changing brokerage functions in the ongoing post-war transition phase. Through the concept of brokerage and broker, the case studies will scrutinize the social situations and contexts within which actors can assume or are forced into brokerage functions. Analytically, this will be explained, based on Bourdieu’s theory of practice and his concepts of habitus, field and capital. This analysis will discuss characteristics of the figures of broker, but will also consider the social field within which brokerage functions are needed and within which specific actors are enabled to pursue them. The case study follows a primarily qualitative research approach with intensive, multi-site fieldwork planned in Sri Lanka (entry-point Mannar) as well as some archival research on priests’ networks beyond Sri Lanka. The field work can build on well-established research networks in Sri Lanka, both among local academics and the policy community. The research module thereby makes three main contributions: first, on a conceptual level, it ties in with the literature on (developmental, economic) brokers in rural development, migration and war-to-peace transitions. On an empirical level, the PhD study will provide in-depth knowledge about the mechanisms of brokerage in the peripheries of fragmented political societies undergoing political transitions. On the policy level, the project provides a more contextualized understanding of the politics of transition in war-to-peace transition by specifying the capacities of key actors that mediate such transitions.

Direktlink auf Lay Summary Letzte Aktualisierung: 21.02.2013

Verantw. Gesuchsteller/in und weitere Gesuchstellende

Mitarbeitende

Publikationen

Publikation
Checkpoint, Temple, Church and Mosque: A Collaborative Ethnography of War and Peace
Spencer Jonathan, Goodhand Jonathan, Hasbullah Shahul, Klem Bart, Korf Benedikt, Silva Tudor (2014), Checkpoint, Temple, Church and Mosque: A Collaborative Ethnography of War and Peace, Pluto, London.
Muslim geographies, violence and the politics of community in eastern Sri Lanka
Hasbullah Shahul, Korf Benedikt (2013), Muslim geographies, violence and the politics of community in eastern Sri Lanka, in The Geographical Journal, 100(3), 146-163.
Sri Lanka - a divided Church in a divided polity: the brokerage of a struggling institution
Johnson Deborah (2012), Sri Lanka - a divided Church in a divided polity: the brokerage of a struggling institution, in Contemporary South Asia, 20(1), 77-90.
Taking Liberties and Making Liberty. Religious Bounding and Political Violence in Sri Lanka
Johnson Deborah, Taking Liberties and Making Liberty. Religious Bounding and Political Violence in Sri Lanka, in Religion.

Zusammenarbeit

Gruppe / Person Land
Formen der Zusammenarbeit
Centre for Poverty Analysis Sri Lanka (Asien)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Dept. of Geography, University of Peradeniya Sri Lanka (Asien)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Jonathan Spencer, University of Edinburgh Grossbritannien und Nordirland (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
SPARC, University of Colombo Sri Lanka (Asien)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern

Wissenschaftliche Veranstaltungen

Aktiver Beitrag

Titel Art des Beitrags Titel des Artikels oder Beitrages Datum Ort Beteiligte Personen
Governance at the Edge of the State Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung The state of nature (On the political theology of or at the frontier) 08.09.2015 Kopenhagen, Dänemark Korf Benedikt;
Postgraduate seminar, Faculty of Arts, University of Colombo Einzelvortrag The im/possibility of secularism: Religion, politics and toleration 13.08.2015 Colombo, Sri Lanka Korf Benedikt;
Faculty of Arts Seminar, University of Peradeniya Einzelvortrag The im/possibility of secularism: Religion, politics and toleration 04.08.2015 Peradeniya, Sri Lanka Korf Benedikt;
Geographien post-säkularer Gesellschaften. Internationale Fachtagung an der Universität Erlangen Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Nous n'avons jamais été séculaire (Wir sind nie säkular gewesen) 12.06.2015 Erlangen, Deutschland Korf Benedikt;
European Conference of South Asia Studies (ECSAS) Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Brokering Sri Lankan warscapes: priestly potentates and travellers 23.07.2014 Zurich, Schweiz Johnson Deborah G.;
Religion at the Borderland; Conceptualizing ‘Borders’ through the Study of Religion Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Otherworldly “heroes”: Catholic priests and the aesthetics and politics of boundaries in a landscape of war and violence 31.10.2013 St. Gallen, Schweiz Johnson Deborah G.; Korf Benedikt;
Postwar Sri Lanka: Politics, Economy, Peace-Building Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Taking Liberties and Making Liberty 25.04.2013 London, Grossbritannien und Nordirland Johnson Deborah G.;
Annual Conference of the American Association of Geographers (AAG) Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Living on the Border: Tamil Priests in Northern Sri Lanka 09.04.2013 Los Angeles, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Johnson Deborah G.;
Annual Conference, British Association of South Asian Studies (BASAS) Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung The Ambivalent Broker 03.04.2013 Leeds, Grossbritannien und Nordirland Johnson Deborah G.;


Selber organisiert

Titel Datum Ort
Summer School "Governance at the edge of the state" (II) 08.11.2015 Copenhagen, Dänemark
Summer School "Governance at the edge of the state" 08.11.2014 Ghent, Belgien
Postwar Sri Lanka: Politics, Economy, Peace-Building 25.04.2013 London, Grossbritannien und Nordirland

Kommunikation mit der Öffentlichkeit

Kommunikation Titel Medien Ort Jahr
Referate/Veranstaltungen/Ausstellungen Fraumünster-Gespräche zu Religion und Politik Deutschschweiz 2013

Verbundene Projekte

Nummer Titel Start Förderungsinstrument
123181 Negotiating rural development in South Asia's periphery 01.02.2009 ProDoc (Forschungsmodul, FM)
154524 Just Settlements: Spaces of Transformation in Post-War Sri Lanka 01.05.2014 Resource not found: '228f486d-c393-4df7-b610-84193c83958f'
149183 Living with violence II: Rural livelihoods and the struggle for territory in post-war Sri Lanka 01.11.2013 Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)

Abstract

This research project investigates the role of brokers and brokerage processes, both in the political and economic spheres. The focus will be on two different functions of brokerage (political, economic) and two different figures of the broker (entrepreneurial, religious) in order to understand the social field within which these brokers have assumed their brokerage functions and to trace their capacities to act in situations of social and economic transitions during and after civil wars. A further objective is to assess their contribution and potential to support livelihood security. The first sub-project explores the work of Catholic priests as brokers across combat lines during the Sri Lankan civil war and their changing brokerage functions in the current post-war phase. The second sub-project investigates the role and potential for development of economic brokers in international labour migration in Nepal in post-conflict situation. Through the concept of brokerage and broker, the two sub-projects will be conceptually linked. Both case studies are interested in understanding the social situations and contexts within which actors can assume or are forced into brokerage functions. Analytically, this will be explained, based on Bourdieu’s theory of practice and his concepts of habitus, field and capital. This analysis will discuss characteristics of the figures of broker, but will also consider the social field within which brokerage functions are needed and within which specific actors get enabled to pursue them. Both case studies follow a primarily qualitative research approach with intensive, multi-site field work planned in Sri Lanka (entry-point Mannar) and Nepal (entry point Kathmandu). Both case studies can build on well-established research networks in Nepal and Sri Lanka respectively, both among local academics and the policy community. The research module thereby makes three main contributions: first, on a conceptual level, it ties in with the literature on (developmental, economic) brokers in rural development, migration and war-to-peace transitions. On an empirical level, the two PhD studies will provide in-depth knowledge about the mechanisms of brokerage in the peripheries of fragmented political societies undergoing political and economic transitions (with case studies from economic as well as political brokerage). On the policy level, the studies provide a more contextualized understanding of the politics of transition in war-to-peace transition by specifying the capacities of key actors that mediate such transitions.
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