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Global Challenges
Issue no. 5 | April 2019
New Grammars of War:
Conflict and Violence in the 21st Century
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Articles for this issue
Global Challenges
Issue no. 5 | April 2019
New Grammars of War: Conflict and Violence in the 21st Century

The Dossier aims to explore new trends and expressions of violence in armed conflict in the 21st century. Taking as a starting point the changing paradigm of armed conflict – from conventional wars with clear contours towards more non-linear, fragmented and protracted types of civil and international conflict — it adopts a broad approach to portray changing forms of violence across different types of armed conflicts (including terrorism, international/civil wars or urban warfare). In the context of a fragmenting international order, with increasingly blurred lines between state and non-state, combatant and civilian, domestic and international, the number of actors involved in conflicts and concurrent strategies of violence have multiplied. In face of the ubiquity of violent conflict — despite an overall decline in interstate conflict and global number of casualties — the Dossier aims to shed light on new or changing forms of violence, their contexts, actors and victims. It explores the novelty, heterogeneity, scales and vectors of violent practices in contemporary conflicts by investigating the impact of a series of factors such as new military technologies (drones, robots), new communication tools (social media), gender, migration, or the subcontracting of security to private actors.

Articles for this issue

New Grammars of War:
Conflict and Violence in the 21st Century
  • I
     
    Seamless pattern of doodle violence

    Homo Conflictus:
    The Protean Nature of Armed Violence in a Fragmenting World

    Reading time: 5 min
  • 1
     
    Symbolic image of the battle, where robots attacked people

    On (Political) Violence

    Reading time: 4 min
  • O
     
    Medieval symbols big set of swords, knife and mace vintage, engraved hand drawn in sketch or wood cut style

    Reflections on the Future of Violent Conflict

    Reading time: 4 min
  • 2
     
    Orange and black figures pottery amphora painting of troy war with achilles fighting

    What Is Really New about the New Wars?

    Reading time: 3 min
  • 3
     
    Battle of the Goldroad from Game of Thrones - Season 7 Episode 4 on the official tapestry produced in Northern Ireland.

    The Privatisation of War

    Reading time: 4 min
  • 4
     
    Giant evil robot destroying the city

    Welcome to the World of Killer Robots

    Reading time: 5 min
  • 5
     
    Human Miseries, from the Suite of Late Wood-Block Prints

    Sexual Violence:
    A New Weapon of War?

    Reading time: 4 min
  • 6
     
    Graffiti artist illegally abandoned in a ruined building

    The Morphology of Urban Conflict

    Reading time: 6 min
  • 7
     
    Émile Friant's drawing of Marie Marvingt and her proposed air ambulance. Émile Friant [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

    Humanitarians as Targets of Violence?

    Reading time: 4 min
  • 8
     

    The Fog of Crime:
    Gang Transformation and the Unpredictability of Violence in Central America

    Reading time: 4 min
Other Issues
Issue no. 3 | March 2018
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Globalization 4.0:
Evolution or Revolution?
Global Challenges
Issue no. 3 | March 2018
Globalization 4.0: Evolution or Revolution?

Has globalisation reached its apex after centuries of growth as suggested by the latest figures of the WTO? In the affirmative, does this imply that we are ushering into a new era of degrowth? Or are we witnessing the reorganisation of the very architecture of globalisation, which remains based on the twin logic of the acceleration and continuous increase of the volume of exchanges, as well as the steady densification of geographic connectedness. Are global exchanges restructuring concomitantly to the fourth technological revolution and the expansion of the digital economy? The present Dossier proposes to approach this question by observing the nature and the evolution of the principal flows that characterize globalisation.

Issue no. 2 | September 2017
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Democracy at Risk
Global Challenges
Issue no. 2 | September 2017
Democracy at Risk

While the 20th century has been characterised by the generalisation of democratisation processes, the 21st century seems to have started with the reverse trend. An authoritarian-populist nexus is threatening liberal democracy on a global scale, including in its American and European heartlands. Charismatic leaders – thriving on electoral majorities and popular referenda – methodically undermine the rule of law and constitutional safeguards in order to consolidate their own power basis. Coupling inflammatory rhetoric with modern communication technologies, they short-circuit traditional elites and refuse to abide by international norms. Agitating contemporary scourges such as insecurity, loss of identity, mass migration and corrupt elites, they put in place new laws and mechanisms to harness civil society and political opponents. In order to better understand the novelty, permanence and global reach of “illiberal democracy”, this second issue of Global Challenges proposes seven case studies (Russia, Hungary, Turkey, the Middle East, Uganda, Venezuela and the United States) complemented by a series of expert interviews, maps and infographics.