Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Saif Al-Islam Alqadhafi's PhD Thesis from the London School of Economics (LSE); Libyan Funding of LSE; Response of the University; LSE Student Sit-In

In reporting on various participants on both sides, governmental and anti-governmental, of the current revolts in MENA countries, the Western press likes to mention apparel as a distinguishing feature between conservatives and progressives, whom to trust as a potential partner, and whom not. Descriptions of Muammar Gaddafi's son, Saif Al-Islam, usually mention that he wears suits, unlike his father, who wears traditional clothing--or more precisely his sartorial embellishments on traditional clothing. Saif has been heralded in the West as an heir to the Gaddafi regime who was moderate, articulate, and educated in the West. It was hoped that he would introduce a new era of reform in Libya. He was entrusted with negotiations with the West regarding the release of the "Libyan nurses" for example.

The London School of Economics and Political Science


From ‘Soft Power’ to Collective Decision-Making? 

Saif Al-Islam Alqadhafi

A thesis submitted to the Department of Philosophy of the London School of
Economics for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, London, September 2007


This dissertation analyses the problem of how to create more just and democratic global governing institutions, exploring the approach of a more formal system of collective decision-making by the three main actors in global society: governments, civil society and the business sector. The thesis seeks to make a contribution by presenting for discussion an addition to the system of international governance that is morally justified and potentially practicable, referred to as ‘Collective Management’. The thesis focuses on the role of civil society, analysing arguments for and against a role for civil society that goes beyond ‘soft power’ to inclusion as voting members in inter-governmental decision-making structures in the United Nations (UN) system, the Bretton Woods institutions, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and other institutions.

The thesis defends the argument that inclusion of elected representatives of nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) in tripartite decision-making structures could potentially create a more democratic global governing system. This conclusion is supported by a specially-commissioned survey of leading figures in NGOs and IGO decision-making structures. The argument is developed in a case study of the WTO.

The thesis explains and adopts three philosophical foundations in support of the argument. The first is liberal individualism; the thesis argues that there are strong motivations for free individuals to seek fair terms of cooperation within the necessary constraints of being members of a global society. Drawing on the works of David Hume, John Rawls and Ned McClennen, it elaborates significant self-interested and moral motives that prompt individuals to seek cooperation on fair terms if they expect others to do so. Secondly, it supports a theory of global justice, rejecting the limits of Rawls’s view of international justice based on what he calls ‘peoples’ rather than persons. Thirdly, the thesis adopts and applies David Held’s eight cosmopolitan principles to support the concept and specific structures of ‘Collective Management’.

Also mentioned to his credit, at least before his rambling, intransigent speech in defense of "his" regime, was the thesis that Dr Seif wrote for his PhD from the London School of Economics (LSE). Since that infamous speech, pundits wonder at how far he has moved off his original beliefs. However, when one's own power base is threatened, one can move very far indeed.

Saif Gaddafi's full speech in Arabic. Described as rambling, it has been compared to Tunisian ex-President Ben Ali's discourse; and, a series of threats playing on Libyan (and Western) fears.

Protesters in Martyrdom/Green Square in Tripoli, after the speech

A better question is how deeply held these beliefs ever were. In light of new information (or at least new to me), one might even question how much help Dr Seif had with his doctoral thesis. The London School of Economics is an extremely prestigious institution, as are the professors named by Dr Saif in his standard Acknowledgements in the thesis. Their ethics are not in question. One does wonder just how much Monitor Group contributed to the thesis:

I would like to express my appreciation to a number of individuals who have provided invaluable assistance to me during the process of writing this  dissertation.  First of all, I would like to thank those at LSE who advised  me directly and gave generously of their time to assist me to clarify and refine my  arguments. This includes Professors Nancy Cartwright, David Held and Alex Voorhoeve. I could not have completed this thesis without them.
I would also like to acknowledge the benefit I received from comments on early drafts of the thesis from a number of experts with whom I met and who consented to read portions of the manuscript and provide advice and direction, especially Professor Joseph Nye. I would also like to thank a number of individuals at Monitor Group with whom I worked to design and conduct the NGO Survey which provides empirical data for this thesis.  [emphasis added] I am particularly grateful for the time given by the respondents in what was a lengthy survey and interview process.

It is, nonetheless, disconcerting that the LSE benefitted from major financial donations before and after Saif received his doctorate. This is disconcerting both to the governance of the LSE and its student body.

London university halts Libya-funded program
Feb 21, 2011 8:33 AM ET
By The Associated Press

LONDON (AP) — The London School of Economics says it has suspended a study program partly funded by a charity run by the son of Moammar Gadhafi after the "distressing" violence in Libya over the past few days.

The university says that in 2009 it accepted a gift of 1.5 million pounds (2.4 million) from the Gadhafi International Charity and Development Foundation, which is chaired by the Libyan leader's son, Seif al-Islam Gadhafi, an LSE graduate.

The school said the money was used to fund a North African research program, which has now been suspended.

The LSE also said it was reconsidering other links with Libya in light of the "highly distressing" violence there.

LSE has offered classes for Libyan officials, but the school said no more such courses were planned.


22 February 2011 Last updated at 09:10 ET
UK university reviews funding from Libya
By Katherine Sellgren
BBC News education reporter

The London School of Economics has said it is reconsidering its links with Libya "as a matter of urgency".

The LSE has run courses for Libyan officials and has received a £1.5m donation from the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation.

Colonel Gaddafi's second son, Saif al-Islam, studied at the LSE, gaining both a Master of Science and a doctorate.

The LSE statement follows a speech made by Saif on Sunday, in which he said the regime in Libya would stand firm.

He warned of civil war and rejected foreign intervention.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi wrote his doctoral dissertation on the role of civil society in the democratisation of global governance institutions.


The LSE has offered executive education programmes to Libyan officials. "No further courses are in preparation," the university's statement said.

“Rather than seeing the opportunity for reform... Saif al-Islam Gaddafi stressed the threat of civil war and foreign intervention”Professor David HeldLondon School of Economics and Political Science
[One of Saif's advisers at LSE]

"We have also received scholarship funding in respect of advice given to the Libyan Investment Authority in London," it continued.

"No further receipts are anticipated."

In 2009, the university was pledged £1.5m from the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation for its North Africa Programme.

The university said it has accepted £300,000 of that grant and the funds so far had been used to develop a research programme on North Africa, focused on politics, economics and society.

"In current difficult circumstances across the region, the School has decided to stop new activities under that programme.

"The Council of the School will keep the position under review.

"The School intends to continue its work on democratisation in North Africa funded from other sources unrelated to the Libyan authorities."

'Opportunity for reform'

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, 38, enrolled at the LSE in 2003 for an MSc which he completed. He continued his studies there, and was awarded a PhD in 2008.

Professor David Held, who supervised his PhD studies, said he watched his former student's speech and was "deeply disturbed by its failure to grasp the changing circumstances of the Middle East in general, and of Libya in particular".

"Rather than seeing the opportunity for reform based on liberal democratic values and human rights, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi stressed the threat of civil war and foreign intervention.

"I have known Saif al-Islam Gaddafi for several years since he did a PhD at the LSE. During this time I came to know a young man who was caught between loyalties to his family and a desire to reform his country.

"My support for Saif al-Islam Gaddafi was always conditional on him resolving the dilemma that he faced in a progressive and democratic direction.

"The speech last night makes it abundantly clear that his commitment to transforming his country has been overwhelmed by the crisis he finds himself in. He tragically, but fatefully, made the wrong judgement."

The LSE Students' Union said it was "totally unjustifiable and contradictory of LSE to operate on funds which contravene its guiding principles".

"We welcome the School's decision to take no further funding from the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation; however, we believe that this does not go far enough.

"The school should take action to ensure that the money that was stolen from the Libyan people for our benefit, is now used for the benefit of Libyan people.


Students at the LSE are angered at the university's association with Libya

Gaddafi funds prompt LSE students' protest
By Katherine Sellgren
BBC News education reporter

Students at the London School of Economics have staged a protest against the university's association with the regime in Libya.

About 12 students stormed the offices of LSE director, Sir Howard Davies Students and 150 held a rally outside.

The LSE says it is reconsidering links with Libya "as a matter of urgency".

But the students demanded the university paid back the £300,000 it had accepted of a £1.5m grant from a charity wing of the regime.

The grant was pledged in 2009 by the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation.

The funds have so far been used to develop a research programme on North Africa, focused on politics, economics and society.

The student demonstrators called on the LSE management to "repay" the £300,000 already spent by creating a scholarship fund for underprivileged Libyan students.

"It's reprehensible that the university continues to benefit from money that was stolen from the Libyan people"
Ashok Kumar
LSE student

The students also urged the university to revoke the LSE alumni status of Libyan leader Col Gaddafi's second son Saif al-Islam, who studied at the university from 2003 to 2008, gaining both a Master of Science degree and a doctorate.

They called for a public commitment that no grants from officials "of such oppressive regimes" would be accepted in the future, as well as a public statement denouncing the recent "gross violations of human rights" by the Gaddafi regime.

One of the protesters, Ashok Kumar, who is also education officer for the LSE students' union, said: "I think it's reprehensible that the university continues to benefit from money that was stolen from the Libyan people and it's only right to return it to the people who are now being murdered in the streets fighting for their freedom."

The money should be returned either as scholarships to underprivileged students, or "to the families of those who have been murdered and who continue to be murdered", he said.


In a statement, the university said the LSE Director "noted the message" from the students.

"He shares the students' revulsion at the recent violence and gross violations of human rights in Libya, and much regrets the association of the School's name with Saif Gaddafi and the actions of the Libyan regime.

"The School's statement of 21 February made clear that School engagement with the present Libyan authorities, covering a number of programmes, has already finished or has been stopped following the events of the weekend of 19-20 February."

The university said no more of the £1.5m donation from the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation would be accepted.

It said about half of the £300,000 already accepted had been spent and its council would now consider what to do with the remaining funds, taking into account the views of LSE students.

The LSE's review of its links with Libya follows a speech made by Saif al-Islam Gaddafi on Sunday, in which he said the regime in Libya would stand firm.

He warned of civil war, talked of "rivers of blood" and rejected foreign intervention.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi wrote his doctoral dissertation on the role of civil society in the democratisation of global governance institutions.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, a son of the Libyan leader, studied at the LSE


Fortunately, it seems as if the London School of Economics is doing the right thing. Unfortunately, it seems the Gaddafi's are doing the wrong thing--with extraordinary violence, brutality, and contempt for the Libyan people.

THE ROLE OF CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE DEMOCRATISATION OF GLOBAL GOVERNANCE INSTITUTIONS: From ‘Soft Power’ to Collective Decision-Making? by Saif Al-Islam Alqadhafi; full thesis online via dropbox; link provided by Kal of The Moor Next Door, via Twitter.
Links to full articles and linked ones provided from various posts on the blog Libya February 17th
Pictures without captions added from Google Images.

Related Posts:
Whence Gaddafi is Getting His Mercenaries: His Influence in Subsaharan Africa
Omar Al Mukhtar (August 20, 1861- September 16, 1931): Quranic Teacher and Resistance Leader عمر المختار
Lockerbie and Libya: Scapegoating? The Silence of the Arab League--Doha Debates Chez Chiara

Your comments, thoughts, impressions?


Anonymous said...

lol..the whole history quite "accurate" and certainly a try to be honest...but but..lack of the self-critic..and blind truth to the West Media & concocted/funded Colonization by Rothschild of the North-Africa..and the Central-Bank in hands of Puppets of Rothschild.. and so call "Democracy Exporters`s" Nato bombing Libya to the Stone-age for Building contracts and the pillage of Natural Resources..
if U like to get true picture just look @:

..ther`s more links to the independent/unbiased sources if those links here not convince the Heinous Crimes concocted/Instigated against Libya, by FUKUS( France/ UK/ US) and Israel/UN all lakej`s to the Banksters & the head of all Rothschild..

Majed said...

Salaam, and Welcom back, we missed your posts.


I like your comment and going to check out your links,May be people will call it confirmation bias,but I really crave for such things,and it is my best read, specially about the Rothschilds they are exceptionally interesting.

Chiara said...

Anonymous--Welcome to the blog. Thanks for your civility and taking the time to express well a differing view.

Majed--Always good to read your comments. Thanks for continuing the dialogue, and in a good manner!


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