Books


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Reconceptualising NGOs and their roles in Development: NGOs, Civil Society and the International Aid System.

Twenty years after NGOs first emerged as objects of development research, much of the research on non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and development to date has been of a variable quality. While much useful work has been done, the development NGO research field is nonetheless characterised by a combination of an over-identification with NGOs, an excessive emphasis on technical/organisational issues and a lack of theoretical-contextual analysis. The result has been work that often bows to policy rhetoric and uncritically and unhelpfully serves to sustain a set of myths about NGOs and their performance – of both a positive and a negative kind. This volume seeks to present less well-rehearsed perspectives. Its thirteen chapters are each written by authoritative researchers in the field. The book has two main objectives: to describe and interpret key aspects of NGOs’ changing roles in development, and to present new analytical approaches. A key priority is to present work that is rooted in stronger theoretical frameworks than has previously been the case, while still maintaining a relevance to policy and practice. The authors represented here are critical of many of the theories and concepts that frame the discourse on development NGOs and many of them propose alternative analytical approaches. In particular they seek to analytically integrate the international aid system in theoretical schemas that seek to explain NGOs and their roles in development. The overall aim of the book is to move forward the critical research agenda on NGOs and development by challenging its normative biases, using approaches drawn from a range of disciplinary perspectives including historical ethnography, organizational studies, political science, critical theory and anthropology.

Tvedt, T., Opku-Mensah, P. & Lewis, D. (eds.) (2007). Reconceptualising NGOs and their roles in Development: NGOs, Civil Society and the International Aid System. Aalborg: Aalborg Universitetsforlag. (ISBN 978-877307799-3).


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Utviklingshjelp, utenrikspolitikk og makt. Den norske modellen.

I boken vises hvordan systemiske trekk som elitesirkulasjon og korporativisme har forsterket seg på en rekke områder. Den dokumenterer også hvordan utviklingspolitikken og utenrikspolitikken i de senere årene har mobilisert stadig større deler av samfunnet og utvidet sin maktbasis i Norge. Den gir slående eksempler på hvordan verden fortsatt modelleres i hjelperens perspektiv, og på hvordan vanskelige politiske spørsmål reduseres til enkel moraliserende posering. Dessuten diskuteres sentrale nasjonale institusjoner (som Røde Kors, NRK og Riksrevisjonen) og deres roller.

Tvedt, T. (2003). Utviklingshjelp, utenrikspolitikk og makt. Den norske modellen [Development aid, foreign policy and power. The Norwegian model, in Norwegian]. (1. ed.), Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk (ISBN 9788205323728).

Tvedt, T. (2009). Utviklingshjelp, utenrikspolitikk og makt. Den norske modellen [Development aid, foreign policy and power. The Norwegian model, in Norwegian]. (2. ed.), Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk (ISBN 978-82-05-39199-4).


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Angels of Mercy or Development Diplomats? NGOs & Aid.

Is the world witnessing a global associational revolution spearheaded by development non-governmental organizations (NGOs)? Is the relationship between states and societies being fundamentally redefined, even in remote, rural corners of the world? What role does the mushrooming of development NGOs play in this political-ideological process? And what about the NGO staff? Are they angels of mercy, government-paid development diplomats, propagandists for a triumphant West, instruments in a coming clash between civilizations, or what? This book will try to shed new light on these large complex questions. It aims in particular, to make studies and discussions of these topics more fruitful and better informed, and less influenced by the political rhetoric of the day and untenable myths about NGO achievements. It puts forward a strong critique of central theories and concepts which have dominated research and discourse on development NGOs. It also proposes and demonstrates some rather different analytical approaches.

Tvedt, T. (1998). Angels of Mercy or Development Diplomats? NGOs & Aid. Oxford: James Currey Publishers (ISBN 0-85255-817-1).


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Den norske samaritan. Ritualer, selvbilder og utviklingshjelp.

Enigheten og forestillingen om Norge som humanitær stormakt og verdens barmhjertige samaritan har dominert mediabildet. En rekke vesentlige spørsmål har imidlertid ikke vært en del av norsk bistandsdebatt: Hvilken betydning har de frivillige bistandsorganisasjonene og den årlige TV-aksjonsdagen for norsk selvforståelse og verdensoppfatning? Og hvilken politisk rolle kan organisasjonene komme til å spille i konfliktområder, ved siden av eller i samarbeid med UD eller NORAD? Disse spørsmålene og en rekke andre, drøfter forfatteren i denne boka.

Tvedt, T. (1995). Den norske samaritan. Ritualer, selvbilder og utviklingshjelp [The Norwegian Samaritan. Rituals, self-esteem and development aid]. Oslo: Gyldendal (ISBN 82-05-23189-3)


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A short cut to decay: the case of the Sudan.

The Sudan can demonstrate that while there is no short-cut to progress there is one to decay and misery. After eleven years of peace, the second civil war has now lasted for more than ten years. Regional, ethnic and religious conflicts are intensifying all over the country. The economy is in shambles while a small élite is enriching itself.

Harir, S. & Tvedt, T. (eds.) (1994) A short cut to decay: the case of the Sudan. Uppsala: Nordiske Afrikainstituttet, (ISBN 91-7106-346-3) (Republished in Arabic, Cairo 1996)


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Nasjonalstaten under press?

Utfordringene nasjonalstaten står overfor i dag er det sentrale tema i denne boken. For å få et klarere blikk for utviklingen i Europa, gjennomgås overnasjonale samlingsframstøt i andre geografiske områder. Sentrale spørsmål reises av de 16 forfatterne. Utgitt i samarbeid mellom Chr. Michelsens Institutt og J.W. Cappelens Forlag. Artikkelsamlingen diskuterer utfordringene nasjonalstaten står overfor, ser på definisjoner, teori og historie, transnasjonale prosesser og overnasjonale instiutsjonsbygging, og nasjonalstatens stilling i andre geografiske områder. Spørsmålene som stilles er om landene er mer knyttet til hverandre nå enn tidligere, og om begrepene stat, nasjon og nasjonalstat har et presist og meningsfylt innhold. Med referanselister til hver artikkel.

Gjerdåker, S., Skålnes, T. & Tvedt, T. (eds.) (1994). Nasjonalstaten under press? [The state under pressure, in Norwegian]. Oslo: Cappelen (ISBN 82-02-14139-7).


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Conflicts in the Horn of Africa: human and ecological consequences of warfare

This volume of essays stems from a multidisciplinary workshop held at the University of Bergen, Norway, during April 1992. All contributions are attempts to understand and describe the problems of the Horn of Africa, its cultural, political and geographical settings in the context of human conflict. The book analyses and documents some collective consequences of different wars in Africa, with diverse characteristics: the immediate national and regional consequences of large-scale regional wars in Ethiopia and Eritrea and in the Sudan; the tribal warfare in south-western Ethiopia; the indirect and long-term consequences of World War 1 in the Blue Nile basin; and the destruction cause by warring clans in Somalia. The book focuses on a contextual analysis of issues leading to conflicts and consequences of conflicts. The chapters also point to another difficulty: how to distinguish between what is caused by war and what results from other factors.

Tvedt, T. (ed.) (1993). Conflicts in the Horn of Africa: human and ecological consequences of warfare. Uppsala: EPOS. ISBN 91-506-0972-6.


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Bilder av “De Andre”. Om utviklingslandene i bistandsepoken

Spørsmålet boken stiller er hvilke bilder av “de andre” som oppsto i Norge i denne perioden da vi, en promille av verdens befolkning, med begrenset erfaring og kunnskap om Asia, Latin-Amerika og Afrika, ble stilt overfor dem? som deres veivisere og hjelpere.

Utviklingshjelpen foregår i en tidsepoke da verden er i ferd med å bli kulturelt erobret av Vesten. Alle lands problemer er for første gang i verdenshistorien blitt beskrevet med felles begreper, med Vestens begreper. Boka diskuterer bl.a. forbindelseslinjene mellom Livingstone og bistandsekspertene, peker på dogmer i norsk bistandspolitikk, spør om eidsvollsmennene i 1814 kan være u-landenes forbilder, og avslutter med å spørre hva vi kan lære av tegneseriefiguren Fantomet.

Tvedt, T. (1990). Bilder av “De Andre”. Om utviklingslandene i bistandsepoken [Images of “the Other”. About Developing Countries in the Era of Development Aid, in Norwegian].  Oslo: Universitetsforlaget (republished in 1991 and 2001).


Development and water-society relations

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Water and Society. Changing Perspectives of Societal and Historical Development.

Description by the publisher: Despite the central importance that water has held for civilizations both ancient and modern, its social significance has made surprisingly little impact on our contemporary understanding of human history and development. Dominant interpretations of the relationship between society and nature have remained water blind.

In Water and Society, historian and leading water expert Terje Tvedt argues for a change that acknowledges the significant role played by water in societal development. Reflecting his expertise as a geographer, historian and a political scientist, and drawing on his wide experience of water issues around the world, Terje Tvedt’s Water and Society provides a long overdue reappraisal of the relationship between water and society, one that gives water its rightful place as central to any true understanding of human history and development.

Tvedt, T. (2016). Water and Society. Changing Perspectives of Societal and Historical Development. London: Tauris (ISBN 9781784530792).


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A History of Water

The 9 volumes A History of Water-series was initiated by Tvedt in 2001 and has over the years led to three series with three volumes in each series. The first series was published in 2006 and the last in 2016. It gives a long-term historical and comparative perspective to the understanding of the complex relationship between water and society. The volumes in the series aim to show how analyses of history and societies’ development – from the birth of civilization to the present day – will be enriched and broadened by also bringing the myriad confluences between water and society into the picture. The series is introduced by Tvedt and his co-editors and contain chapters written by 255 scholars from a very wide range of disciplines and from almost 100 countries. It presents a unique overview of water issues in different countries and cultural and geographical regions. It demonstrates that a focus on water-society relations opens up a wealth of new empirical areas and makes it possible to put forward new and inclusive explanations of important historical processes and events, and suggest new theories of social development.

Tvedt, T. (ed.) 2006-2016. A History of Water, 9. Volumes. I.B. Tauris, London/New York.


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A Journey in the Future of Water

Nourished by fears of global warming and climate change, water has become an issue of international concern. In A Journey in the Future of Water leading water expert, TerjeTvedt, travels to 25 countries and all continents to find out more about the ways in which different nations are seeking to respond. From Project Moses, where gigantic underwater gates will rise to prevent the inundation of Venice, to India’s River Link Plan, connecting 37 Himalayan rivers to major rivers in the south, the author examines the world’s largest engineering projects, travels the great river valleys, visits “”the largest ocean under the Earth,”” and major cities of the world, to explore water’s determining role in the life of the planet. The most comprehensive and accessible account of global water issues to date.

Tvedt, T. (2013). A Journey in the Future of Water. I.B. Tauris, London/New York.


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The River Nile in the post-colonial Age: conflict and cooperation among the Nile Basin Countries

The Nile Basin is a vast and varied area of 350 million people. Parts of the basin have become the very symbols of African misery, suffering drought, genocide, state failure and aid dependency. At its heart lies the Nile itself. Yet whilst the importance of the river is well documented for the colonial period there is no comprehensive account of its management after independence. “The River Nile in the Post-Colonial Age” details the modern development of the Nile Basin and the efforts to manage its waters. With important new material by researchers from each of the countries through which the Nile passes, it provides an indispensable aid to understanding the complex history of the basin, the politics surrounding it and the efforts being made to jointly manage it.

Tvedt, T. (ed.) (2010). The River Nile in the post-colonial Age: conflict and cooperation among the Nile Basin countries. London: Tauris (ISBN 978-1-84511-970-6). (Translated into and published in Arabic, Cairo 2017)


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The River Nile in the Age of the British: Political Ecology and the Quest for Economic Power.

The Nile today plays a crucial role in the economics, politics and cultural life of ten countries and their more than 300 million inhabitants. No other international river basin has a longer, more complex and eventful history than the Nile. In telling the detailed story of the hydropolitics of the Nile valley in a period during which the conceptualisation, use and planning of the waters were revolutionised, and many of the most famous politicians of the twentieth century―Winston Churchill, Benito Mussolini, Dwight Eisenhower, Anthony Eden, Gamal Abdul Nasser and Haile Selassie―played active parts in the Nile game, this work will stand as a case study of a much more general and acute question: the political ecology of transnational river basins.

Tvedt, T. (2004). The River Nile in the Age of the British: Political Ecology and the Quest for Economic Power. I.B. Tauris. London.