Conrad Grebel University College
140 Westmount Road North
Waterloo, ON, Canada N2L 3G6
This paper highlights some of the important enabling conditions for Community Innovation, explores the many roles that changemakers can play in supporting innovation, and provides a framework for identifying where action might be most needed in your community.
"With the current intensity of attention focused on innovation in the private, public, and social sectors, it is important to remember that innovation is an innate human capacity. Our current communities and lifestyles are a testament to this fact. At a scale unlike any other animal on earth we naturally change our environments, organizing structures, and beliefs to suit our needs. However, our communities still face a myriad of challenges and opportunities, so the work of Community Innovation is not (and will never be) complete. As well, though innovation is a natural human, individual, and community activity, it must be cultivated to achieve the types of impacts our communities hope for."Creating Fertile Soil: Catalyzing community innovation (PDF)
Review of "A Nation of Feminist Arms Dealers? Canada and Military Exports"
by Ernie Regehr
Ernie Regehr reviewed “A Nation of Feminist Arms Dealers? Canada and Military Exports” for the International Security Studies Forum.
“Canadian military export policies came to unusual public attention following Canada’s 2014 agreement to sell $15 billion worth of armored vehicles to Saudi Arabia. The deal was negotiated under the Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper and was subsequently given official approval, through the granting of export permits, by the Liberal Government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who was elected in 2015. In the debate that ensued, the greater indignation was reserved for the Liberals, who had come to power on the promise of a return to multilateralism and re-engagement with the United Nations—a posture that raised expectations of a renewed exercise of Pearsonian internationalism rather than of record-breaking arms sales to one of the world’s most egregious violators of global human rights standards.”
Srdjan Vucetic. “A Nation of Feminist Arms Dealers? Canada and Military Exports.” International Journal 72:4 (2017): 503-519.
The War in Yemen: 2011-2018: The elusive road to peace
by Sonal Marwah and Tom Clark
This report provides an overview of the evolution of the conflict in Yemen from 2011 to mid-2018. It finds that the current absence of peace is related to the UN’s failure to take up its traditional role as the body that builds peace. In the case of Yemen, it simply endorsed a peace process developed by the Gulf Cooperation Council in April 2011 to end Yemen’s political crisis.
This report begins with the large-scale protests that broke out in Yemen in 2011 in the wake of the Arab Spring uprisings. It then explores the internationalization of the civil war in 2015, when the GCC intervened on behalf of the ousted government, examining the shortcomings of the GCC plan to bring peace to the country. Next, It shows how the war has led to a deteriorating humanitarian situation for Yemeni citizens, especially since 2015. The final section examines the prospects for peace, with Yemen now in its fourth year of war.
Christian Political Engagement in a New Key? Reading Ellul in Ottawa
by Paul Heidebrecht
Political Illusion and Reality (2018) is a collection of twenty-three essays on Ellul’s political thought edited by David W. Gill and David Lovekin. Veteran as well as younger Ellul scholars, political leaders, activists, and pastors, discuss aspects of Ellul’s thought as they relate to their own fields of study and political experience. As an engineering student, and then in the course of researching seminary and graduate school theses in Christian ethics that focused on the topic of technology, Paul was exposed to both Ellul’s social scientific and theological writings.
This chapter is an attempt to explain why it might makes sense for churches and church agencies in the Canadian context to pay close attention to governmental structures. His thesis is that the pursuit of political engagement is one important way for Christians to act in the midst of a barren moral landscape defined by, as Ellul put it, technique.
Space Security Index 2018
by Project Ploughshares and its partners
Project Ploughshares publishes 2018 report on trends and developments in space, in collaboration with its partner institutions, including The Simons Foundation, McGill University Institute of Air and Space Law, Research Unit for Military Law and Ethics at the University of Adelaide, George Washington University Space Policy Institute, and Xi’ian Jiaotong University School of Law.
"Space Security Index 2018 is the fifteenth annual report on developments related to safety, sustainability, and security in outer space, covering the period January-December 2017. The project seeks to provide a policy-neutral fact base of trends and developments in space security based on primary, open-source research in an annual report."
The Index report can be obtained on the project's website.
Making Sense of the Multiple Faces of Leadership by Liz Weaver
"There are so many different approaches to leadership. My bookshelf is full of publications about civic leadership, collaborative leadership, servant leadership, and adaptive leadership. It is so confusing. What are the similarities and differences in these leadership approaches? What leadership approach is most impactful in a community change context? This paper explores the multiple faces of leadership and, drawing from my own experience in both implementing and supporting an array of community change efforts, focuses on two central questions:
- What similarities and differences exist between various approaches to leadership? and,
- Which leadership approaches are best suited to help community changemakers achieve their desired impact?"
Canada, the Arctic, and the expanding world of drones
by Ernie Regehr
Ernie Regehr, O.C., authors the article as part of the Arctic Security Briefing Papers. He writes the paper series in his work as the Senior Fellow in Arctic Security and Defence at The Simons Foundation.
"Remotely piloted vehicles' get frequent mention in last spring’s Canadian defence policy statement. They are characterized as integral to a range of new capabilities to be acquired by the army, air force, and navy, as bringing new operational sophistication to the armed forces, as enhancing joint intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities in the Arctic, and as enabling precision strikes. But don’t expect to see prominent military drone operations in Canada’s high north any time soon – it’s a foreboding environment, adapting models to the north’s unique geography and climatic conditions will take time and money, the advantages are not self-evident, and, what should be top of mind, the international community has yet to agree on credible international standards for the responsible transfer and use of drones."
Conrad Grebel Review Vol. 35, No. 3 (Fall 2017)
edited by Jeremy Bergen, Paul Heidebrecht, and Reina Neufeldt
This issue covers the work of the authors at the Global Mennonite Peacebuilding Conference and Festival held June 9-12, 2016 at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario. The papers are presented under the theme "Global Mennonite Peacebuilding: Exploring Theology, Culture, and Practice".
"The Conrad Grebel Review (CGR) is a multi-disciplinary peer-reviewed journal of Christian inquiry devoted to advancing thoughtful, sustained discussions of theology, peace, society, and culture from broadly-based Anabaptist/Mennonite perspectives. It is published three times a year."
The issue can be read on the journal's website.
Space Security Index 2017
by Project Ploughshares and its partners
Project Ploughshares publishes 2017 report on trends and developments in space, in collaboration with its partner institutions, including The Simons Foundation, McGill University Institute of Air and Space Law, Research Unit for Military Law and Ethics at the University of Adelaide, George Washington University Space Policy Institute, and Xi’ian Jiaotong University School of Law.
"The Space Security Index is the first and only annual, comprehensive and integrated assessment of space security. The project seeks to provide a policy-neutral fact base of trends and developments in space security based on primary, open-source research in an annual report."
The Index report can be obtained on the project's website.
The Community Innovation Imperative
by Sylvia Cheuy
"Developing innovation capacity within our communities and the non-profit sector has now become a strategic imperative. With the array of complex challenges now confronting communities, the solutions we need will not be found by simply making incremental changes to our current programs and approaches."
"In this paper, Sylvia Cheuy explores community innovation - a unique form of social innovation that is place-based within the specific geography of a community."
Turf, Trust, Co-creation and Collective Impact
by Liz Weaver
A preceding paper for Tamarack’s Community Change Institute "Cities of the Future: Co-Creating Tomorrow" held in Vancouver, Canada from September 25-29, 2017
"Authentic community change moves at the speed of trust. And yet, we spend so little time and focus on intentionally building trust amongst partners. This paper explores the intricacies of trust, how to build it and what to do when trust is broken."
War or Peace in Cyberspace: Whither International Cyber Security? Conference Report
The summary report of "War or Peace in Cyberspace: Whither International Cyber Security" Conference held in Waterloo, Ontario, on May 24, 2018. This report prepared by Stephanie MacLellan highlights some of the key themes emerging from the discussions.
The conference was made possible by The Simons Foundation Canada's support, along with other sponsors, including the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Project Ploughshares, the Canadian Pugwash Group, and the Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement at Conrad Grebel University College.
When Good Intentions are not Enough: Confronting Ethical Challenges in Peacebuilding and Reconciliation
by Reina Neufeldt
Good intentions. Good ends. Failure. People usually assume peacebuilding is morally good because well-intentioned people are pursuing good ends. Likewise, reconciliation. But, what happens when the moral values that drive peacebuilding become a problem?
Reina Neufeldt explores how moral and ethical claims that are intrinsic to peacebuilding can contribute to failure and can be part of transformational engagement. Her research is featured in 2017 Benjamin Eby Lecture, an annual lecture that presents the research of a faculty member at Conrad Grebel University College. It is named after Benjamin Eby (1785-1853), an early educator and Mennonite church leader in Waterloo County.
Reina Neufeldt’s research interests include the ethics of peacebuilding, civil society peacebuilding, the relationship between peacebuilding and development, ethno-national conflict, reflective practice, monitoring and evaluation. She has worked with a number of nongovernmental organizations on peacebuilding, including Catholic Relief Services and Mennonite Central Committee. She is currently an advisory board member for the Peacebuilding Evaluation Consortium (PEC) and serves on Project Ploughshares’ governing committee. A professor in the Peace and Conflict Studies program at Conrad Grebel University College, University of Waterloo, she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on research, ethics, development and peacebuilding, as well as music, peace and conflict, and the quest for peace in literature and film.