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CCS hosts the South-South Institute during the World Social Science Forum, 10-18 September

South-South Institute
The institutes are designed to serve as a research forum for the generation of fresh and original comparative insights on the diverse problems and challenges facing the countries of the South.


Within the ambit of the IDEAS-CLACSO-CODESRIA collaboration, a series of activities and programmes has been scheduled for implementation, among them an annual comparative research seminars. The institutes are designed to serve as a research forum for the generation of fresh and original comparative insights on the diverse problems and challenges facing the countries of the South. In doing so, it is hoped also that the seminars will contribute to the revival and consolidation of cross-regional networking among Southern scholars, foster a scholarly culture of Southern cross-referencing, and contribute to a type of theory-building that is more closely attuned to the shared historical contexts and experiences of the countries and peoples of the South. The seminars will be rotated among the three continents where the lead collaborating institutions are located, namely, Africa, Asia and Latin America. This way, participants in the seminars who will also be drawn from all three continents will be exposed to the socio-historical contexts of other regions of the South as an input that will help to broaden their analytical perspectives and improve the overall quality of their scientific engagements.

The underlying objective of the comparative research seminars is to offer participants an opportunity to transcend the limitations of received wisdom emanating from structures and processes of knowledge production and dissemination that are characterised by various degrees and layers of inequality. In doing so, it is hoped to both motivate and equip participants in the seminar with the critical theoretical and methodological perspectives that might be appropriate for gaining a full understanding of the specific situation of countries and peoples located outside the core of the international system such as it is presently structured. The main premise for this effort is the glaring inadequacy of the theories and methodologies developed in the North, and crystallised in the mainstream social sciences, to provide the required instruments for the attainment of a sound and holistic understanding of the problems confronting - and, in many cases, overwhelming the countries of the South. Through the seminars, it is hoped to be able to mobilise scholars from across the South to reflect on the alternatives that are available for overcoming the present situation. This way, the seminars will contribute to the promotion of a better knowledge and understanding of the theories and methodological approaches developed in different regions of the South as alternatives to the dominant, Northern-biased paradigms that have shaped the social sciences. It is also expected that participants will become acquainted with the local intellectual environment in the regions where different sessions of the seminar are hosted, and strengthen their comparative research capacities in the process. In sum, the seminars are structured to serve as a unique forum for enhancing a deeper understanding among Southern scholars of the history, politics, economy and culture of the countries of Africa, Asia and Latin America, and offer an opportunity to participants to develop long-lasting collaborative relationships with their counterparts from other Southern countries.


Are the BRICS anti-imperialist or sub-imperialist forces in world
geopolitical economy?

Patrick Bond Saturday 12 September 2015

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