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Seminar: Fragile peace and transition in Myanmar (København)


Torsdag, 24. maj 2018 - 14:00 til 16:00


DIIS - Danish Institute for International Studies, Auditorium, Gl. Kalkbrænderi Vej 51A, København Ø

The high hopes of the Myanmar transition towards democracy and peace, have given way to internal scepticism and international critique. The atrocities in Rakhine state have in particular caught the world’s attention when leading 700.000 Rohingya people to flee to Bangladesh since August 2017. 

At the same time, the military continuously attacks ethnic minorities in the border areas of Northern and Eastern Myanmar, despite promises of peace and political changes towards federalism. The continued violence calls into question the capacity and willingness of the democratically elected government – under the leadership of Aung San Suu Kyi – to facilitate peace, and ensure the inclusion of the country’s many ethnic and religious minorities in the political development of Myanmar.

This seminar will focus on four important issues in Myanmar’s contested reform process: democracy, peace, federalism, and justice. International experts on Myanmar will provide critical insights into the current political situation and address the main challenges for the future of Myanmar. The following are some of the crucial questions that will be debated at the seminar:

  • What form of government is currently evolving?
  • What are the prospects for a more inclusive political system, and what kinds of reform are needed for a transition to democracy?
  • To what extent will the military and other armed actors continue to play a pivotal role in politics and society?
  • What are the roles of international actors in Myanmar’s political transition? 

This seminar is the second of two seminars held on the 24 May 2018 focusing on Myanmar. For more information about the first seminar, James C. Scott on public historical memory, please follow this link


Louise Riis Andersen, Senior Researcher, DIIS

Morten Pedersen, Senior Lecturer, University of South Wales

Ardeth Thawnghmung, Professor, University of Massachusetts

Helene Maria Kyed, Research Coordinator, DIIS

Mark Duffield, Professor, University of Bristol

Michael Lidauer, Independent Consultant and Researcher


14.00-14.10: Welcome and introduction - Louise Riis Andersen

14:10-14.25: The contested peace process in Myanmar - Morten Pedersen

14.25-14.40: Challenges for democratic development - Michael Lidauer

14.40-14.55: Federalism and political negotiations - Ardeth Thawnghmung

14.55-15.10: Justice and local dispute resolution - Helene Maria Kyed

15.10-15.20: Discussion - Mark Duffield

15.20-15.50: Q&A with the audience - Chaired by Louise Riis Andersen

15.50–16.00: Coffee and tea

Practical information

The seminar will be in English and live streamed on diis.dk.

Participation is free of charge, but registration is required. Please use our online registration form no later than Wednesday 23 May 2018 at 12.00 noon. Live stream does not require registration.

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