‘Too often, the development community has treated states affected by fragility and conflict simply as harder cases of development…Yet these situations require looking beyond the analytics of development – to a different framework of building security, legitimacy, governance and economy’ World Bank, President Bob Zoellick.
Of the estimated 1.4 billion people living in extreme poverty, around one quarter are thought to live in ‘so called’ fragile states. These are countries characterised by protracted insecurity, political instability, weak governance and poor economic management. Lacking the state capacity to deliver basic services and meet people’s aspirations, they are often affected by violent conflict. Fragile states have now become a prominent feature of international development, security and diplomacy landscapes. This concentration of the world’s poorest in fragile states brings with it major challenges of governance, economy and security.
The drivers of fragility are complex, linked to both international and local factors including economic and social inequalities and exclusion, lack of effective channels for the peaceful expression of people’s demands and expectations, severe economic decline, and competition over natural resources. At root, conflict and fragility often stem from failures of governance, increasing the risk of violent modes of dispute resolution. But what does this mean in practical terms and what challenges and risks does it present?
ODI hosted a meeting series to explore the causes of fragility and the key challenges to peace building and state building processes. The series brought together a mix of senior researchers, practitioners and policy makers to discuss the opportunities and challenges for engaging in fragile situations in terms of approaches, tools and instruments.
This last meeting of the series will focus on aid systems and aid delivery in fragile situations.
this meeting the panel discussed state building processes and what needs to be done to improve future efforts by the international actors.
In this meeting, the sixth of a series on fragile states, the panel, composed of senior Sudan policy makers, discussed the continued challenges of promoting recovery in Southern Sudan, the tensions and trade-offs...
this meeting, the fifth of a series on fragile states, the panel, based on experience from Sudan, South Africa, Burundi, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and other contexts, discussed the nature of political settlements, the role of peace negotiations and...
aim of the session is to address dilemmas surrounding the international community facilitating transitional justice in post-conflict areas.
this meeting, the third of a series on fragile states, the panel discussed the expanded role of peacekeeping missions, the challenges they confront as they increasingly engage in complex settings and what needs to be done to improve future efforts...
Security, development and stabilisation: Promoting peaceful transitions through international engagement
meeting host a discussion on emerging policy responses in frgaile states, how they translate into practice and what needs to be done to improve peaceful transitions through international engagement.
This meeting, the first of a series on fragile states, set the scene for the series by providing an overview of current debates on state fragility, emerging policy responses and operational priorities.