Siri Gloppen

Siri Gloppen
University of Bergen | UiB · Department of Comparative Politics

About

68
Publications
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602
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Introduction
Siri Gloppen is professor of Comparative Politics at the University of Bergen, Senior Researcher at the Car. Michelsen Institute, and Director of the CMI-UiB Centre on Law & Social Transformation.. Siri does research in the intersection of law and politics: rights and law as strategies for social change; courts as accountability mechanisms and sites of political struggle; effects of rights and law. Current project include: ´Sexual & Reproductive Rights Lawfare: Global Battles´; 'Political determinants of sexual and reproductive health: Criminalisation, health impacts and game changers'. 'Breaking BAD: Backlash against democracy in Africa'; 'The Human Right to Water: can it help bring water to the poor'; 'Women on the Bench'.

Publications

Publications (68)
Chapter
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This chapter analyses the forms and content of politicized homophobia in Africa and explains the rising politiciza-tion of nonheteronormative sexuality and gender identity that has marked much of the conti-nent in the past decade, and the role of law in this process. Providing examples from across the continent, the chapter argues that politicizati...
Article
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We argue that deliberative decision making that is inclusive, transparent and accountable can contribute to more trustworthy and legitimate decisions on difficult ethical questions and political trade-offs during the pandemic and beyond.
Article
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We argue that deliberative decision-making that is inclusive, transparent and accountable can contribute to more trustworthy and legitimate decisions on difficult ethical questions and political trade-offs during the pandemic and beyond.
Article
In India, the historically disadvantaged groups of tribal people categorised as the Schedule Tribes have largely remained on the fringes of growth. There is a constitutional provision the Sixth Schedule applicable in certain areas of tribal territorial majorities in the North East of India that recognises the. The question is how effective these le...
Chapter
This chapter examines how social movements in the developing world and ‘bottom-up’ alternative politics, supported by new technology and globalized networks, can strengthen democracy. It first traces the origins of social movements, showing how different forms of social movements have emerged and been influential during different periods, before di...
Article
Pathways to Judicial Power in Transitional States: Perspectives from African Courts by Rachel L. EllettLondon: Routledge, 2013. Pp. 256. £85 (hbk) - Volume 53 Issue 2 - SIRI GLOPPEN
Article
Almost all states have ratified international documents committing them to secure the right to “the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health” for all their citizens, and obliging them to pursue this to the maximum of available resources. A growing number of countries have similar commitments in their national constitutions. But wha...
Book
The concept of juridification refers to a diverse set of processes involving shifts towards more detailed legal regulation, regulations of new areas, and conflicts and problems increasingly being framed in legal and rights-oriented terms. This timely book questions the impact international and national regulations have upon vulnerable groups (the u...
Chapter
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All societies develop their own norms about what is fair behaviour and what is not. Violations of these norms, including acts of corruption, can collectively be described as forms of ‘grabbing’. This unique volume addresses how grabbing hinders development at the sector level and in state administration. The contributors – researchers and practitio...
Article
Despite major developments to provide conceptual clarity to the legal enforcement of economic, social and cultural (ESC) rights, research analysing the processes of implementing court rulings and their actual impact is scarce, and there is a lack of consensus on the impacts of this kind of intervention on public policies, the plaintiffs, society, o...
Article
1. The increasing importance of law in politics—often referred to as the “judicialization,” “legalization,” or “juridification” of politics, or, more polemically as “juristocracy”—is noted by a number of scholars in relation to wide range of fields and geographical areas. See for example Tate and Vallinder (1995); Ferejohn (2002); Shapiro (2002); H...
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This paper assesses the benefits, risks, and limitations of human rights based approaches to development, which can be catalogued on the basis of the institutional mechanisms they rely on: global compliance based on international and regional treaties; the policies and programming of donors and executive agencies; rights talk; and legal mobilizatio...
Technical Report
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The report explores what strategic efforts to advance human rights might involve in fragile and conflict affected settings.
Book
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Introduction: Power and Accountability in Latin America and Africa Courts' Accountability Functions: A Framework for Inquiry The Accountability Functions of Latin American Courts Explaining the Rise of Accountability Functions of Costa Rica's Constitutional Court Comparing Courts' Accountability Functions in Africa Does Legal Tradition Matter? The...
Chapter
Many countries across the globe have in the past two decades undertaken substantial judicial and legal reforms to strengthen the democratic character of their governments. Yet, the ability and willingness of courts to restrain elected officials vary greatly. This book describes these experiences, analyzes the reasons for existing variations, and he...
Chapter
The last two decades have witnessed a transformation of superior court behavior in many less developed countries. These courts have metamorphosized from being moribund, rubber-stamping institutions with little importance in political matters to more forceful, assertive institutions that constrain the behavior of popular branches of government and t...
Chapter
Similar to the African cases discussed in the previous chapter, Mozambique’s judiciary suffers from a lack of staff, funds, and other resources. Not unlike Uganda, Mozambique has emerged from a context of prolonged civil war preceded by colonial rule, and for a long time, formal court structures simply were not functional. Similar to its neighbors...
Chapter
This chapter compares the accountability functions of courts in Zambia, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda. These five countries share important characteristics that suggest a similar role for the courts; yet, the accountability functions of the higher courts differ significantly, both across countries and over time. How can this variation...
Chapter
The previous chapter contrasted the rise of Colombia’s “hyperactive” Constitutional Court with the mixed record of the Argentine Supreme Court and the unquestionable reluctance of Chile’s highest court to routinely exercise its accountability function. Of these three countries, Colombia’s Constitutional Court was clearly the most extreme case of ju...
Chapter
This book has addressed the puzzle of why, over the last two decades, some superior courts in less developed, democratic countries have increasingly exercised an accountability function, while others have remained relatively deferential to the popular branches of government. Our examination of the high courts in ten countries on two continents has...
Chapter
This chapter examines the accountability function of superior courts in three Latin American countries—Argentina, Chile, and Colombia—in the last two decades.1 This comparison appears promising because the respective courts have assumed very dissimilar roles in countries that share a common colonial and independence history, similar legal tradition...
Article
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This article commends the concise and useful analysis of courts and the legal enforcement of economic, social and cultural rights given in Christian Courtis’ book, Courts and the Legal Enforcement of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: Comparative Experiences of Justiciability. Yet, in order to complete the picture, a broader analysis of the enab...
Article
When, and how, does taxation provide for more democratically accountable governments? This article focuses on three interrelated issues affecting the relationship between taxation and accountability: the 'internal accountability' of the tax system; the 'democratic accountability' emphasising the links between governments and their citizens; and the...
Article
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The courts in Malawi have played a prominent role in political life since the democratic transition in 1993, which came about after three decades of repressive authoritatian rule. Whilst the quality of electoral politics have deteriorated, the courts have become increasingly central. In the 2004 elections they were involved at every stage of the el...
Article
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This article offers a framework for exploring litigation as a strategy to advance the right to health by holding governments accountable to human rights norms. Since the 1990s, cases in which people go to court to claim their right to health have increased dramatically in resource-poor countries. With issues ranging from access to health services a...
Article
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Malawi's democratic Constitution of 1994 shifted the law in a pro-poor direction. With the judiciary emerging as a surprisingly strong institution in an otherwise weak political system, one might expect a body of pro-poor jurisprudence to develop. This has not been the case, and this article investigates why. After considering patterns of poverty a...
Article
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Those landmark cases where courts have assertively defended the rights of poor, vulnerable, or insular groups—such as homosexuals, refugees, or indigenous peoples—even in the face of social hostility and indifference have generated considerable interest in the role of courts as protectors of the marginalized. What role can and do courts play in pro...
Article
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This report summarises the findings of a joint research project undertaken by the Centre for Social Research, Chr. Michelsen Institute and the Universities of Malawi and Bergen. Ensuring that elected political leaders play by the rules of the political game and act in accordance with their mandates without violating citizens’ rights is a challenge...
Article
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This report analyses the 2006 Ugandan presidential and parliamentary election in terms of the broader process starting with the processes of setting the rule for political contestation, through the registration of voters and parties, the nomination of parties and candidates, the campaign, the voting, counting and tallying and finally, the handling...
Article
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The paper analyses the role of litigation as a strategy to fulfil the social rights laid down in the South African constitution. Critically examining litigation as a means to bring the constitutional provisions to life, it explores how different aspects of the social, political and legal context condition the litigation process. Focus is on the soc...
Article
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The paper addresses the methodological problems concerning how to assess the political role of courts in Zambia - and in new democracies more generally, and suggests a framework within which this can be done. Particular focus is on the accountability function vis -à-vis political authorities. We also raise the issue of the role courts play (positiv...
Article
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Creating a viable judiciary and strengthening its democratic functions has been a main concern of both national governments and donors over the last two decades. This report attempts to chart and systematise the efforts that have gone into the area of judicial reform. That includes various efforts at improving the functioning of a country’s legal s...
Article
This comparative analysis of the judiciaries in Tanzania and Zambia finds that neither one has developed a strong accountability function vis-à-vis the government. It goes on to address why judges in the two countries rarely have restrained the government in politically significant cases, identifying three sets of factors that may explain why the j...
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Can improved revenue collection and tax policies provide for more democratically accountable government? The theoretical literature, mainly derived from a Western political setting, has concluded that political considerations are important in shaping tax policies and their implementation. In the context of Africa, however, little is known about the...
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Taking its cue from the poverty-reduction thrust of the Millennium Development Goals, this paper proposes an analytical framework for answering the fundamental question: How can we increase the responsiveness of decision-makers to the concerns of the poor and hold them accountable for their commitment to reducing poverty? The paper develops an appr...
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The report presents an overview of institutional strategies to deal with the problem of past atrocities – trials, purges, truth commissions, restorative efforts, reforms, amnesty and amnesia. It discusses the main debates and dilemmas raised by these efforts, as reflected in the transitional justice literature. A central lesson drawn is that local...
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The paper investigates litigation as a strategy to advance the social rights of marginalized people, asking under what conditions it is likely to be effective - in the narrow sense of winning cases, and in the broader sense of changing social policy. It draws on reported experiences with social rights litigation in different parts of the world to d...
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The aim of this study is to review central debates on human rights within the social sciences and humanities with a view to enumerating the present state of knowledge about human rights and development. The central topics discussed in the report are: The development of human rights norms; cultural relativism versus universal human rights; human rig...
Article
Rapporten inngår i studien "Menneskerettigheter i et utvikingsteoretisk perspektiv", som Programmet for menneskerettighetsstudier ved Chr. Michelsens Institutt har utført på oppdrag fra Departementet for utvikingshjelp/ Utenriksdepartementet. Rapportens målsetning er å gi en bred og mest mulig representativ framstiling av hovedsynspunktene i samfun...

Questions

Question (1)
Question
This is very interesting! I just came from Malawi where killings of people with albinism for Muti/witchcraft was an important election issue. Is this something that you have worked on? And is this also the case in other countries?

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Projects

Projects (5)
Project
From Ethiopia, Malawi and Tanzania to Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa, African states are adopting legal restrictions on key civil and political rights that form the basis of democratic rule. The Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI) and University of Bergen’s (UofB) joint project “ Breaking BAD: Understanding Backlash Against Democracy in Africa” aims to develop a rigorous empirical basis for understanding the scope, causes, responses to and effects of the backlash against democracy that has swept the African continent over the past decade. The research team employs mixed methods, combining surveys and experiments with a qualitative approach. CMI and the UofB have teamed up with researchers from the University of California at Berkeley (UCB), the University of Washington, Cornell University and universities/research institutions in Ghana, Malawi, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The ongoing cooperation with University of California at Berkeley has provided the opportunity to include PhD-candidates from UofB and UCB actively in fieldwork in Zambia. With funding from the Research Council of Norway’s FRIHUMSAM-programme, the team can now include more PhD-candidates in the fieldwork, hence extending PINQ’s educational component.