Det Arabiske Initiativ

Rikke Gram

Studenteropgave: Speciale


In 2003 the Danish government launched The Danish-Arab Partnership Programme, in order to strengthen Danish-Middle Eastern cooperation, and to support democratization and modernization in the Arab world. When DAPP was established, it was presented as a part of the Danish contribution to the fight against international terrorism and also as a prerequisite for preventing the development of islamic extremism. DAPP was funded from Danish development aid. Using development funds for international conflict resolution and security matters, was legitimized by the believe that lack of development leads to insecurity in the donor countries such as Denmark. In 2010, seven years after the first presentation of a Danish-Arab programme, to a greater extend DAPP was presented as a contributor to make dialogue possible between Middle Eastern and Danish civil society organisations and government institutions; and also to support the attempts to make reforms within the Arab societies. At first DAPP was primarily presented in connection with the fight against terrorism and later presented as a contributor to create dialogue between Denmark and the Arab world. As shown the presentation of DAPP has changed over time. Hence the object of this study is to analyse whether there also has been changes in the problems that DAPP as a policy tries to resolve; and furthermore, to estimate the influence of the problem representations in DAPP as a relevant program to support reform and dialogue in the Middle East. The first part of the thesis is a discussion of the main research which has dominated the field of study concerned with democratization in the Middle East in the last twenty years. In my research I mainly draw on the knowledge of the latest of these approaches called the post-democratization approach. This approach has a critical perspective on the study of democratization and reform programmes such as DAPP, and this is the point of departure from which my critical study of DAPP can begin. My analysis will begin with the establishment of DAPP. You cannot disregard the security aspect in an analysis of the Programme based on the political context in which it was founded. Therefore the analysis of the establishment of DAPP will be done with the theoretical tools of securitization theory. In this section I will arrive at the conclusion that DAPP can be defined in connection with a radicalisation of development aid in which underdevelopment is discursively constructed as an existential security threat, and that DAPP was established as a political reaction in continuation of this radicalisation. DAPP was articulated as a policy that dealt with minimising the threat of terrorism from islamic environments in the Middle East. The means to this end in DAPP is through a dialogue based on professional partnerships. Next follows a diachronic analysis based on a critical approach to policy analysis. In this part I will conclude, that even though the problem representations in DAPP in 2010 to a greater extent than earlier are problems with lack of reform and dialogue in the Middle East; and also dialogue between the Middle East and Denmark the policy still has an object of securitization, only now in a more institutionalised way. The analysis so far has shown that even though the presentation of the problems in the programme has changed, the main objective in the Danish-Arab Partnership Programme is still to handle security issues. This argument I support with the final case-study where a selection of implementation projects is analysed with the aim of studying the discursive effects of DAPP. This angle on the Programme shows that it has consequences for the organisations carrying out the implementation of the policy, and that a security discourse influence the representation of problems in the policy, and hence on the possibilities of DAPP to support dialouge and reforms in the Middle East and partnerships between Danes and the citizens of the region.

UddannelserHistorie, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat
Udgivelsesdato15 apr. 2011
VejledereJakob Egholm Feldt & Connie Carøe Christensen


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  • Mellemøsten