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Book part
Publication date: 11 July 2007

Angela Joya

This paper examines the transformation of Syrian political economy from 1970 until 2005. I argue that Syria has undergone two important phases of political and economic…

Abstract

This paper examines the transformation of Syrian political economy from 1970 until 2005. I argue that Syria has undergone two important phases of political and economic transformation, from building a centralized state and economy in the early 1970s to embarking on the path of market economy in the early 1990s. With the logic of competitiveness guiding the direction of economic development, the socio-economic changes of the mid-1980s and after have corresponded with an important process of class and state formation. After a brief discussion of the current transition in Syria, the following sections of the paper attempt to provide a critical study of the different strategies for economic development. Section two examines the process of state and economic centralization of the 1970s and 1980s and highlights the contradictions of this period. Section three assesses the impact of economic liberalization through a study of competitiveness in the economic policies of the 1990s and 2000. The final section examines the economic and political impasse that Syria has been faced with. In conclusion, I argue that the current path of market economy as the strategy for capital accumulation has not resolved the socio-economic problems that Syria has faced in the last two decades. This strategy will continue to face contestation by marginalized groups such as factions of the Baath Party, landless peasants, workers and small producers as Syria becomes even more integrated into the regional and global economy.

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Transitions in Latin America and in Poland and Syria
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-469-0

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Article
Publication date: 23 May 2020

Aboubakr Fathy Awaad

This study aims to highlight the dimensions of the rivalry over the regional role between two regional powers in the Middle East, and the impact of local, regional and…

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1850

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to highlight the dimensions of the rivalry over the regional role between two regional powers in the Middle East, and the impact of local, regional and international pressures of the Syrian crisis on the role performance of the competing forces.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on using “the role approach” as an analytical frame to benefit by the application of the theory of role. This approach allows the possibility of linking various analytical levels, both in clarifying the relationship between internal and external factors and showing the interaction between elements of perception, abilities and behavior.

Findings

The international pressures shall remain governing the frame of competition among the roles of the regional powers, through determining the course of competition and its direct impact on its results.

Originality/value

This study examines the phenomenon of regional rivalry between two distinct and competing regional powers, in a turbulent environment in the wake of the Arab Spring crises, which created opportunities and challenges for regional powers, especially in Syria, where it intersected with the interests and policies of major and regional powers.

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Review of Economics and Political Science, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2356-9980

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Article
Publication date: 10 June 2020

Mona Soliman Gadelmola

The escalation of Turkish intervention in Arab internal affairs before and after the revolutions of the Arab Spring, particularly the military intervention. Sometimes…

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1141

Abstract

Purpose

The escalation of Turkish intervention in Arab internal affairs before and after the revolutions of the Arab Spring, particularly the military intervention. Sometimes Ankara threatens with military intervention and sometimes establishes large military bases in Arab countries: Qatar, Somalia and Iraq. Moreover, it carries out extensive military operations within the borders of some Arab countries such as Iraq and Syria. This type of behavior requires a study that takes into consideration the reasons of such behavior and future implications on the relations between the Arab and Turkish parties.

Design/methodology/approach

The theoretical framework of the study will follow neorealism, as the basis for understanding Turkish pragmatic foreign policy adopted in managing its international relations and interests with various countries.

Findings

The situation in Afrin after a year of Turkish occupation confirms this. Erdogan may not go ahead with a new military operation in east Euphrates and northern Syria. He may prefer instead he may deem it better to control the safe area in the north through the revival of the agreement of Adana of 1998. However, Turkey's desire to control northern Syria, which represents a quarter of the country, faces tough resistance of Turkish groups, Russian-Syrian rejection and European-American resentment. Control of the Syrian north may be subject to concessions and consensus among these powers without excluding any of them.

Research limitations/implications

States in the international system, such as companies in the local economy, have the same main interest: that’s survival. It is worth noting that Waltz’s neorealistic theory cannot be applied to domestic national politics. It cannot contribute to the development of state policies relating to its international and internal affairs. His theory only helps to explain the reason behind the similar behavior of countries despite having different forms of governments and diversity of political ideologies. It also explains why the comprehensive international relations have not changed despite the growing decentralization of these countries.

Originality/value

How does neorealism explain Turkish military intervention in Syria since 2016?

Details

Review of Economics and Political Science, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2356-9980

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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2016

Emer Groarke

This paper aims to show the viability of consociational power-sharing as a conflict-resolution tool in Syria. It further argues that a subsequent movement from…

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1578

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to show the viability of consociational power-sharing as a conflict-resolution tool in Syria. It further argues that a subsequent movement from consociational to centripetal power-sharing is vital to ensure sustainable peace.

Design/methodology/approach

A theoretical overview of power-sharing as a conflict-resolution tool provides the basis for this paper, supported by empirical evidence and qualitative research analysis for its proposed application in Syria. Perceived obstacles to a negotiated settlement are outlined, with suggestions made as to how these issues can be transformed into incentives for invested parties. Such obstacles include Bashar al-Assad remaining in power, and calls for the implementation of Shari’a law by some opposition groups.

Findings

While previously the conditions of the conflict were not conducive to peace talks, this paper finds that regional developments, including the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, have re-opened the possibility of, and indeed the necessity for, political negotiations. Detailing the complexity of a conflict that goes far beyond a mere sectarian divide, the findings of this paper dispel the notion that a sectarian partition is a viable model for Syria. The paper highlights the multiple cleavages occurring simultaneously, and shows how a power-sharing model is best suited to deal with them.

Originality/value

The paper analyses the ongoing inertia of political negotiations to peacefully resolve the conflict. It offers an approach to conflict-resolution in Syria that has, thus far, not been adequately considered in academic – or political – spheres.

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International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

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Article
Publication date: 15 January 2020

Ebrahim M.R. Lababidi

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship and implications of institutional autonomy and capacity through the Central Bank of Syria in its ability to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship and implications of institutional autonomy and capacity through the Central Bank of Syria in its ability to implement an effective anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorism financing (CTF) framework during a period of intense armed conflict.

Design/methodology/approach

Due to the lack of reliable data currently available on Syria, this paper focuses on Syria’s AML/CTF legislation through passed laws and regulations; annual reports on the Central Bank of Syria and the AML and terrorism financing authority; the academic literature on money laundering, terrorist financing and institutional capacity. This paper will address the theoretical framework of Coleman and Skogstad’s characteristics that define the degree of autonomy and capacity of an institution. Though their characteristics are applied toward the Canadian state, for the purpose of this paper, they have been adopted in the absence of their use verbatim in the case of the Central Bank of Syria.

Findings

The Central Bank of Syria has experienced diminishing independence due to conflict-induced stress in Syria’s financial sector. This loss of autonomy is attributed to the prioritization of government-led emergency policies to secure and stabilize Syria's economy. Despite this loss, the Central Bank of Syria has maintained considerable and effective improvements in Syria’s AML/CTF framework, aligning it closer to that of international standards promoted by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Institutional gaps, however, still exist. These gaps imply that the Central Bank of Syria still lags in a number of areas that affect its capability in implementing a more effective AML/CTF framework.

Research limitations/implications

The conflict in Syria is still a very new topic that lacks a considerable amount of reliable data. As such, many research limitations were encountered despite the volume of information reviewed for this paper in both Arabic and English. Nevertheless, this paper provides a clearer understanding of how state capacity is reflected in its institutions through certain policies and approaches taken by a central monetary authority with implications and results in a country rattled by years of intense conflict.

Practical implications

Despite the research limitations and implications, this paper provides a clearer understanding of how state capacity is reflected in its institutions through certain policies and approaches taken by a central monetary authority with implications and results in a country rattled by years of intense conflict. This can be useful for institutional policymakers, as well as academics exploring the relationship between the state and its institutions in times of hardship.

Originality/value

Though there is AML/CTF literature on Middle Eastern countries such as Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, very little is written on Syria. There is also very little written on the broader subject of state and institutional capacity through the lens of an effective AML and CTF framework during a period of intense armed conflict. By looking at an ongoing conflict, this paper explores a subject with as much detail as needed to provide an illustration of the relationship and implications of institutional autonomy and capacity in relation to the state through an effective AML/CTF framework in a country with a struggling financial system.

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Journal of Money Laundering Control, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1368-5201

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2019

Nura Ibold

The wave of popular unrest in the Arab world reached Syria in March 2011, and what started as peaceful demonstrations with simple demands of justice and freedom turned…

Abstract

The wave of popular unrest in the Arab world reached Syria in March 2011, and what started as peaceful demonstrations with simple demands of justice and freedom turned into a brutal armed conflict and a full-scale civil war. Over seven years of conflict resulted in the deaths of over half a million Syrians, the forced displacement of millions more, and a huge loss of the country's social and physical structures. What began as another Arab Spring movement against a dictatorial regime has turned into a proxy war that has attracted the interests of the world and regional powers. The paper discusses Syria's political history and investigates the motives for the Syrian uprising and argues that it is related to socio-economic deprivations rather than sectarianism. The work underlines the interests of the countries involved in the Syrian conflict focusing on Russia, USA, Iran, and Turkey, as well as their contribution to the future reconstruction of the country.

Over the past few years, the Syrian regime and its allies targeted many cities and destroyed opposition-held neighborhoods. The work considers if this destruction was part of an overall strategy adopted by the al-Assad regime to terrorize those who opposed it and change Syria demographically, examining the new laws issued by the government to transfer public properties into the hands of its loyal businessmen factions, as in the case of the reconstruction project in the city of Homs.

Seven years of war exhausted Syria's financial stocks, and the country (and in turn the regime) is suffering the consequences of military spending. But like any other war, destruction is also a great opportunity to generate money through reconstruction and growth. It is a “win-win situation”; the regime will use the fund designated for reviving the country to its own benefit, gaining future profits. Already invested in the conflict, involved countries will be part of the reconstruction process to secure their presence and control in Syria.

United Nations agencies like UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) and UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) are working closely with the Syrian regime and its governmental representatives. This research examines their involvement and how their ‘humanitarian mission' is being exploited to prop up the al-Assad regime.

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Open House International, vol. 44 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Article
Publication date: 14 September 2012

Rania Kamla, Sonja Gallhofer and Jim Haslam

This paper adds to a focus of the social accounting literature (on perceptions and attitudes to social accounting) by seeking to offer insights into Syrian accountants'…

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14045

Abstract

Purpose

This paper adds to a focus of the social accounting literature (on perceptions and attitudes to social accounting) by seeking to offer insights into Syrian accountants' attitudes towards, and perceptions of, social accounting in Syria in the first decade of the twenty‐first century, with particular attention to its role, future development and implementation.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper takes the form of an analysis of interviews of Syrian accountants; contextual analysis (and an appreciation of the prior literature).

Findings

Syrian accountants' perceptions are shaped by developments in Syria's socio‐political and economic context, encompassing imperialism/colonialism, globalisation and cultural specificities, including Islam. Interviewees perceived a significant role for a social accounting – that would parallel the Western form of social accounting – in enhancing well‐being in the dynamic context. At the same time, they were reluctant to see the development and implementation of this accounting in Syria as an urgent issue, so that this social accounting might be left initially at least with an even more marginal part to play than in the West. The study suggests that a combination of forces – global developments, Western imperialism and Syria's colonial history – have had a substantively repressive rather than progressive impact on the development of social accounting in Syria vis‐à‐vis its more positive potential.

Research limitations/implications

All limitations of interview research apply. This study focuses on Syria in a context when economic transition was a major issue. Further studies of economies in transition would be of interest.

Practical implications

An awareness of how the local and the global interact in debates over social accounting can provide insights for policy makers concerned with accounting regulation.

Originality/value

The focus on Syria, a non‐Western country, enriches the social accounting literature, which focuses mainly on Western developments.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 25 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Book part
Publication date: 21 October 2019

Gail Vignola

A small private university in rural Indiana has connected itself irrevocably to the protracted Syrian conflict. Through the efforts of committed students, faculty, and…

Abstract

A small private university in rural Indiana has connected itself irrevocably to the protracted Syrian conflict. Through the efforts of committed students, faculty, and community members – stupefied by the endless violence – this cohort of kindred souls has committed itself to creating solace and support for Syrian students, their families, and their countrymen everywhere. Inspired by a story of torture and displacement, a professor, along with her Syrian students and their American allies, have implemented outreach education programs, campus and community initiatives, local business partnerships, and social media support, creating agency for displaced Syrians, not as passive beneficiaries but as co-partners for change and solidarity.

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Conflict and Forced Migration
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-394-9

Keywords

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Abstract

Details

Gender and the Violence(s) of War and Armed Conflict: More Dangerous to Be a Woman?
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-115-5

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Book part
Publication date: 10 July 2019

Yahya Al-Abdullah and Rosemary Papa

This chapter’s focus is on the disparate factors that are affecting higher education students that by circumstance not of their making are both displaced and seeking…

Abstract

This chapter’s focus is on the disparate factors that are affecting higher education students that by circumstance not of their making are both displaced and seeking refuge within the fields of continuing their higher education. The fear of losing a young educated generation that can be part of the reconciliation process of the country in the post-conflict era has become close to reality, especially in Syria and in the neighbouring countries where the lost possibility of Syrian refugees’ returning to Syria is higher than other places. We have organized this chapter into three parts. The first part explores the history of higher education for Syrians with emphasis on the last half century. The second part describes the theoretical underpinnings of those displaced in today’s social political context through the lenses of Foucault and Maslow. The third part discusses a specific case study: the challenges Syrian students are facing in Lebanon, focusing on specific policies such as online education as a viable tool for serving displaced students, legal documents and the lack thereof, ability to get scholarships, policies and laws to understand.

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Education, Immigration and Migration
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-044-4

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