View this email in your browser

GLD Newsletter
June 2019

In This Newsletter

  • 2020 Annual Conference
  • Working Paper
  • Podcast
  • Staff Announcements
  • And More!

Keep Up With Us


GLD Fourth Annual Conference
GPS: Governance, People and Space

The Program on Governance and Local Development at the University of Gothenburg will hold its fourth annual conference on May 18 - 19, 2020.
Entitled "GPS: Governance, People and Space,” the conference aims to examine how governance mechanisms and outcomes vary across differences in people (e.g., gender, ethnicity) and space (e.g., neighborhoods, villages/cities, and other spatial contexts).
We consider governance by both state and non-state actors and institutions, and welcome proposals from both scholars and practitioners seeking to understand how processes and practices of governance differ across these spatial and demographic arenas and the extent to which these arenas intersect.
GLD will cover presenting participants’ conference and travel expenses (with the exception of ground transportation outside of Sweden).
Submission deadline: Expressions of interest should be submitted via the Google Form found HERE by October 5, 2019.
Contact: If you have any questions or desire further information, feel free to email us at

New Working Paper

Tribes without Sheikhs? Technological Change, Media Liberalization, and Authority in Networked Jordan

The flag of the “Great Arab Revolt” in Madaba Governorate, Jordan (Source: author’s own)
This paper examines the ways in which Jordan’s rapidly evolving media sector is transforming the nature of authority in Jordan. An older generation of leaders, known as sheikhs, confronts technologies they often don’t understand and a new generation that has little respect for its elders’ ancestral claims. Amid a proliferation of social media tools that allow young people to use the idiom of the tribe to act quickly and decisively—even violently—in the political field without regard for their elders, the Jordanian government seeks to reassert control over a media sector that is increasingly international, for profit, and privately held. Yet a new generation of would-be tribal leaders is rushing into the breach. Drawing on case studies of sheikhs, police officers, and journalists, this paper argues that the future of authority in Jordan will depend on the continued ability of leaders to use media to move between various scales of socio-political organization, representing themselves individually while also convincingly standing in for lineages of various sizes and, indeed, the nation itself.


From the Field

Podcast with Dominic Burbidge: The Kenyan Experiment in Devolution


Episode 5: Dominic Burbidge discusses his new book "An Experiment In Devolution, National Unity and the Deconstruction of the Kenyan State." Following the introduction of a new constitution in 2010, Kenya has implemented one of the most radical and far-reaching decentralization programs in Africa. This podcast outlines the events leading up to the new constitution, as well as the ramifications of these sweeping reforms.

Dominic Burbidge is a Research Associate of the Programme for the Foundations of Law and Constitutional Government in the Faculty of Law. He received his doctorate in Oriel College, University of Oxford, and his masters in St Antony's College, before working as a Postdoctoral Researcher in Princeton University and then a Departmental Lecturer in Oxford's School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies. He has also previously been a Postdoctoral Research Officer in Oxford's Faculty of Law. He holds particular expertise in Kenya's radical devolution of government functions under the 2010 constitution. He has written on how the legal changes are being navigated locally, as well as on the broader theory of subsidiarity and decentralisation.


New Funding: Local Governance under Decentralization: Oman in Comparative Perspective

GLD received support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. The grant of 350,000 USD will fund research on local governance under decentralization in Oman and the Arab region. The project is led by GLD associate and newly appointed, assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Marwa Shalaby, along with Ellen Lust and Kristen Kao. We’re grateful to the Carnegie Corporation of New York for supporting this work and look forward to beginning this project. We also congratulate Marwa Shalaby on her new position!

There are some exciting years ahead!

Short Term Research Grants

GLD is offering a limited number of research fellowships for scholars for short-term research on Governance and Local Development. Awards averaging 25,000 SEK (and up to 35,000 SEK in exceptional circumstances) will be offered to support research travel to the for projects related to critical governance issues. Recipients are expected to submit a paper to be included in the GLD Working Paper Series.

Themes include, but are not limited to:

  •     Local governance challenges
  •     Service delivery as it varies across local contexts
  •     Relationship between state and non-state actors
  •     Level of corruption and citizens’ perceptions of it
  •     How citizens solve disputes with officials, families, and friends and how state or non-state actors are involved
  •     Participation in local elections and political campaigns
  •     How security services are provided in transitional periods and/or under weak central states

Please send through your CV and research proposal in English to by 30th September. Succesfull applicants will be contacted within two weeks of this deadline.

For more information click here.


#Did You Know...?

Click here to read the working paper.

Welcoming New Staff

Clockwise Top Left-Bottom Left: Erica Metheney, Tove Wikehult, Jenna Jordan and Rose Shaber-Twedt

Erica Metheney (Database Manager)
Erica joins GLD as our new Database Manager. She has recently finished her PhD in Statistics at Texas A&M University. Her professional interests include data and network analysis.


Tove Wikehult (Program Coordinator)
Tove joins GLD as our new Program Coordinator. She holds a Bachelor degree in Political Science from University of Gothenburg and has also studied International Relations at Science Po, Lyon.  During her studies she did an internship at the Swedish Mission to the UN in Geneva, working with humanitarian affairs and migration issues and at GLD, working as a research assistant. Tove has worked as a research assistant at University of Gothenburg and Leicester University, as a case officer at the Swedish Migration Agency and most recently as a coordinator at the Quality of Government Institute.


Jenna Jordan (Data Intern)
Jenna joins GLD as our new Data Science Intern. She is currently a Master's student in Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her interests lie in data curation and management of international development, governance, and conflict data.


Rose Shaber-Twedt (Director's Assistant)
Rose holds a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from Royal Holloway, University of London. She has worked as a research administrator and editor at University of Gothenburg School of Global Studies, and is currently the administrator for the Gothenburg Centre of Globalization and Development (GCGD) in addition to her duties at GLD.

Goodbye Ruth Carlitz and Suprabhath Kalahasti!

A massive thanks to Ruth and Supra who have been with us for two and a half years and six months respectively. Your work has been invaluable to our success, and you will be greatly missed.

Wishing you the best in your future adventours. Stay in touch and visit often!

Internships @ GLD

Do you want to experience being part of a research team and work with questions that promote human welfare globally? We are looking for highly motivated, self-driven interns who are interested in governance and development. Knowledge of statistical programs, Arabic, French, or Swedish is an asset. As an intern you will be an important part of our team and will be given the opportunity to obtain practical experience in working with a research project within academia.

We are currently accepting applications for three different internship positions: Research, Data Science and Project Management. While we prioritise applications from Gothenburg University students, we welcome submissions from around the world.

To apply, please send your CV, a cover letter describing why you want to participate in our internship program, and a writing sample to We ask that you submit all documents in English.

And Finally... Happy Summer!

The team at GLD wishes you all a great and restuful summer. We'll be back with more of the same in August.

Ha en fin sommar!



Our mailing address is:

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.