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The Transnational Institute (TNI) is an international research and advocacy institute committed to building a just, democratic and sustainable world. For more than 40 years, TNI has served as a unique nexus between social movements, engaged scholars and policy makers.

The Transnational Institute (TNI) is an international research and advocacy institute committed to building a just, democratic and sustainable world.

Founded in 1974 as a network of ‘activist scholars’, TNI continues to be a unique nexus between social movements, engaged scholars and policy makers.

TNI has gained an international reputation for carrying out well researched and radical critiques and anticipating and producing informed work on key issues long before they become mainstream concerns, for example, our work on food and hunger, third world debt, transnational corporations, trade, and carbon trading.

As a non-sectarian institute, TNI has also consistently advocated alternatives that are both just and pragmatic, for example developing alternative approaches to international drugs policy and providing support for the practical detailed work of public water services reform.

TNI's Projects

TNI works on a wide range of interlinking issues.  The constant interaction between fellows and projects gives TNI a unique, broad and informed perspective and enables a cross-disciplinary approach to complex global problems.

TNI's work currently includes:

  • Leadership as a respected global voice on drugs policy, promoting a pragmatic approach to tackling illegal drugs based on harm reduction principles.
  • Supporting a dynamic international network involved in building participatory, public sector water as the best way to achieve the goal of water for all
  • Confronting the dogma of trade liberalisation, which like financial liberalisation has led to increased inequality, and helping to construct regional alternatives, such as the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas, based on regional cooperation and solidarity
  • Analysing and exposing the democratic dangers posed by the concentration of corporate power and proposing new legal frameworks of accountability for transnational corporations.
  • Engaging with democratic innovations and experiments undertaken  by social movements, progressive political parties and governments worldwide helping to empower communities to gain control over their lives and environment
  • Drawing together and analysing the links between the different elements of the systemic crisis —financial, environmental and social.   

Transnational Institute Resources

Displaying 21 - 30 of 31
January 2014
South Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa
Western Asia
Northern Africa

There is a general consensus among academics, politicians and social movements, that BRICS as ‘new donors’ are increasing both their quantitative and qualitative role in defining what is considered to be ‘the world economic order’.

Policy Papers & Briefs
September 2013

Burma's dramatic turn-around from 'axis of evil' to western darling in the past year has been imagined as Asia's 'final frontier' for global finance institutions, markets and capital.

Policy Papers & Briefs
April 2013

The reform process in Burma/Myanmar by the quasi-civilian government of President Thein Sein has raised hopes that a long overdue solution can be found to more than 60 years of devastating civil war...

January 2013

This paper argues that REDD+ will not stop forest destruction developing countries and the underlying causes of deforestation remain untouched. The paper suggests that because REDD+ is embedded in the logic that environmental destruction in one location can be ‘compensated’ in another, it acts to reinforce the underlying drivers of deforestation and climate change.

Reports & Research
April 2012

Analysis of the social costs of large-scale Chinese-supported rubber farms in northern Burma suggests that the future for ordinary citizens will be affected as much by the country's chosen economic path as the political reforms underway.

Reports & Research
January 2012

Northern Burma’s borderlands have undergone dramatic changes in the last two decades. Three main and
interconnected developments are simultaneously taking place in Shan State and Kachin State: (1) the increase
in opium cultivation in Burma since 2006 after a decade of steady decline; (2) the increase at about the same

Reports & Research
November 2011
South-Eastern Asia

What rural dwellers in the Global South experience as land grabbing, tends to be seen in the Global North as ‘agricultural investment’. The World Bank has been at the forefront of a drive to legitimate these investments, convening to win support for a code of conduct based on Responsible Agricultural Investment (RAI) principles.

Reports & Research
December 2010
South-Eastern Asia

Abstract: "Land-grabbing is occurring at a significant extent and pace in Southeast Asia; some of the characteristics of this land grab differ from those in regions such as Africa. At a glance, Europe is not a high profile, major driver of land-grabbing in this region, but a closer examination reveals that it nonetheless is playing a significant role.

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