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ISS Humanitarian Governance Seminar: Political and Humanitarian Crisis in Myanmar

24 May, 2023 @ 16:30 18:30

In this Humanitarian Governance hybrid seminar, Dr Gerard McCarthy presents his book examining how ideals and practices of non-state welfare can sustain democratic resistance and undermine social reform.

This panel discussion marks the publication of Gerard McCarthy’s Outsourcing the Polity: Non-State Welfare, Inequality and Resistance in Myanmar

Informed by research during Myanmar’s decade of partial civilian rule (2011–2021), the book examines how ideals and practices of non-state welfare can both sustain democratic resistance and undermine social reform over time.With non-state social actors more important than ever following Myanmar’s return to dictatorship in 2021, Outsourcing the Polity casts new light on the lasting legacies of outsourcing for distributive politics and poses questions about humanitarian engagement in Myanmar in the years to come.During this hybrid event, McCarthy will offer a short overview of the book and then scholarly and practitioner discussants will offer comments and perspective. The talk will conclude with a Q&A.


Gerard McCarthy – Assistant Professor of Social Policy and Development at ISS
Maaike MatelskiOpens external – Assistant Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology at Vrije University Amsterdam
Andrew Fischer – Professor of Inequality, Social Protection and Development at ISS
Khin OhmarOpens external – Founder and chairwoman of the Advisory Board of Progressive Voice