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World Politics Review Features New Conflict Report

October 17, 2017 — Ellen Laipson, Trustee Emerita at The Asia Foundation, highlights key findings from The State of Conflict and Violence in Asia in “Troubling Insights From Asia About the Durability of Gender-Based Violence.”

But gender-based violence in countries not at war is trickier to assess. Some experts are beginning to view violence against women, whether at home or work or in the public space, as a form of internal conflict that must be included in serious assessments of the trends in overall violence and instability. Last week, The Asia Foundation—where I am a trustee emerita—released a major study looking at violence and conflict in 14 Asian countries where the foundation has field operations to promote good governance, economic reforms and peace.
The study carefully collected and collated data on different forms of violence, drawing from government and international organizational data and diverse studies by independent experts. It presents its summary findings in eight categories, from national and transnational—civil war, national political conflict, transnational terrorism; to subnational—separatism, communal conflicts; and local, including urban crime and violence. But the authors conclude that gender-based violence has to be treated separately, at least until more comprehensive data is available.

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