International Political Science Association (IPSA): Proposal for Funding a Joint IPSA Workshop by RC 37 and RC 2, IPSA

Workshop Organizers: Zillur R. Khan, Chair, RC 37/IPSA: Rethinking Political Development; Rosebush Professor Emeritus, University of Wisconsin and Adjunct Professor, Rollins College, USA, and Distinguished Fellow, Policy Research Institute, Bangladesh. Co-organizer is RC 2/IPSA: Political Elites represented by its Executive Board Member, Professor Oxana Gaman-Golutvina, Head of Comparative Politics Department, MGIMO-University, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia, President of Russian Political Science Association, and Chairman of RPSA National Committee on Political Elites.

Workshop Title: Rethinking Political Development: Cultures, Civilizations and Identity. Proposed Date: December 12-13, 2013

Rationale for the Workshop: The workshop will bring together international scholars in an effort to explore the different facets of nationalism-secular and non-secular, and sovereignty-absolute and cooperative, in the context of the evolving perceptions of human identity immersed in different cultures and civilizations in global power relations.

Given the fact that Political Science has varied dimensions the discrepancy between model and local empirical conditions are often within the margin of accommodation where cultural weight rests, impacting the outcome of interactions.

The recent history across the world comprising political upheavals in the Middle East and rising politico-economic-social tensions in Asia has presented many cases in which societies have not displayed a political behavior in conformity with the expectations of either the normative or empirical facets of political theory. This departure may be due to the unaccounted for importance of the cultural elements that the different political models exclude. Is it therefore useful and/or necessary to revise political development models to account for these cultural variables?

Nation-states from the Middle East to South and South East Asia to Far East present a dysfunctional competition for control of resources, both known and yet-to-be found. Could the unresolved legacies of such conflicts and a weak political culture serve as catalysts to transform the state-society relations to a new model of a positive national sovereignty--the sovereignty of the citizen and the service-provider character of state institutions? Could this development create one world and fundamentally change the traditional definition of national sovereignty, outmoding national boundaries and negative aspects of nationalism?

Against the backdrop of geopolitical and ideological rivalries could Muslim majority countries meet their development needs by “progressive openness’? Could Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Libya, Malaysia, Pakistan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, among others, engage in fruitful cooperation with the West in productive co-existence, if not close cooperation, to manage, if not resolve the conflict between western civilization and non-western cultures in the changing global power relations?

Format, Content, and Output: The workshop is expected to be inaugurated by Professor Rehman Sobhan, Founder Chairman of the Center for Policy Dialogue, Bangladesh. Ambassador Farouk Sobhan, Chairman, Bangladesh Enterprise Institute (BEI) will preside over the inaugural sessions of the two-day IPSA workshop. The expected format is a two-day workshop to be hosted jointly by Bangladesh Enterprise Institute (BEI) and the Policy Research Institute (PRI), Bangladesh. The workshop will consist of six panels (6 x 3 paper-givers); with one discussant and one chair per panel, and two inaugural sessions with a moderator for each where three keynote papers will be presented.

Each paper-giver will make a 15-minute presentation. Once the panellists have concluded their presentations, the discussant(s) will provide a brief set of oral comments (10-15 minutes). The panel chair will then open the floor to questions and discussion (35-45 minutes) from the audience. Professor Zillur R. Khan, Chair of RC 37, IPSA will serve as Keynote Speaker at the first inaugural session, presenting his address on the need of rethinking the whole issue of development from the perspective of Culture and Civilization in the context of identity based values affecting power relations in an increasing global competition for resources. Dr. Ahsan Mansur, Executive Director, Policy Research Institute, Bangladesh, will deliver the second Keynote address focusing on cultural dimensions of international support for development plans and their implementation. On the second day’s inaugural session, Dr. Zaidi Sattar, Chairman, Policy Research Institute (PRI), Bangladesh, Adviser to the Financial Express, the leading financial daily of Bangladesh, and Member of Board of Directors of Southeast Bank Ltd., Industrial and Infrastructure Finance Development Co. (IIFDC), Venture Investment Partners (VIPB) Ltd., Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE), and Asia Insurance Ltd., will deliver the concluding Keynote Address on "The critical Role of Political Institutions in the process of economic development of Bangladesh". In the Q & A session an additional focus will be on how effectively have International Development Institutions provided strategic support to Politico-Economic development of Bangladesh in the context of South Asia. The results of the workshop will be communicated within the International Political Science Association (IPSA) and wider academic communities (as well as outside it to practitioners and policy-makers) via the subsequent publication of an edited volume of selected papers. Following the workshop, a book prospectus will be sent to leading academic publishers that have published books either focusing on a similar topic or employing a compatible theoretical approach, such as Cambridge University Press, Cornell University Press, Duke University Press and McGill-Queen’s University Press. Commercial peer-reviewed presses, such as Oxford, Routledge, Lynne Rienner, and Palgrave Macmillan, will also be considered.

Budgeting and Funding Applications: The amount budgeted for the workshop is US$ 4000.00. Local costs of the meeting will be covered by the local hosts, namely PRI and Bangladesh Enterprise Institute (BEI). I've received communication from a number of participants of XXII World Congress, showing interest in presenting papers at the proposed workshop. They’ve also assured me that their travel would be largely funded by their respective institutions. In addition to local participants there will be paper presenters from Canada, France, India, Lebanon, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Turkey and USA. As Chair of IPSA RC 37 (and workshop organizer), I am applying for USD 2,000 in funding from the IPSA Committee on Research and Training (CRT) so that we reach the ($4,000.00) budget-target. It is understood that in accordance with established IPSA rules, IPSA funds may only be used for contributing to the travel expenses of paper-givers on a “fair” basis taking into account special needs, not for paying honoraria.