IPI HomePublicationsPolicy PapersManaging Contradictions: The Inherent Dilemmas of Postwar Statebuilding

 

print print  |  share share back back

Policy Papers - November 13, 2007

Managing Contradictions: The Inherent Dilemmas of Postwar Statebuilding

Roland Paris and Timothy D. Sisk

 

 

Statebuilding—the construction of legitimate, effective governmental institutions—is a crucial element in any larger effort to create the conditions for a durable peace and human development in countries that are just emerging from war. In recent years, statebuilding has emerged as a central goal of multidimensional United Nations peace operations in war-torn societies, and for good reason. Without functioning and legitimate state institutions, postconflict societies are less likely to escape the dual “traps” of violence and poverty. But the record of postwar statebuilding operations has been mixed, and in many respects disappointing.

This report summarizes the research findings of the Research Partnership on Postwar Statebuilding (RPPS), a collaborative research project of thirteen scholars from six countries who have sought to disentangle and scrutinize some of the key dilemmas of statebuilding. The contributors to this project believe that improving the effectiveness of statebuilding as a method of postwar peace consolidation requires more than simply identifying “lessons learned” from previous missions. Rather, it also demands more awareness and analysis of the tensions, contradictions and dilemmas of statebuilding.

 Read the Spanish translation

The Global Observatory

Key Global Events to Watch in October
A list of key upcoming meetings and events with implications for global affairs.

2014 Top 10 Issues to Watch in Peace & Security: The Global Arena
A list of ten key issues to watch that are likely to impact international peace and security in 2014, compiled by IPI's Francesco Mancini.

The Global Observatory, produced by IPI, provides timely analysis on peace and security issues, interviews with leading policymakers, interactive maps, and more.

Recent Events

September 25, 2014
Estonian President: Russia’s Actions Threaten International System
On September 25th, President Toomas Hendrik Ilves of Estonia warned that Russia’s recent aggression in Ukraine is a threat to the norms of the international system as we know them, and that it may lead to a drastic reassessment of foreign policy priorities in Europe.

September 22, 2014
Kevin Rudd, Former Australian PM, to Chair Independent Commission on Multilateralism
Kevin Rudd, former Prime Minister of Australia, will chair the newly launched Independent Commission on Multilateralism (ICM). The Commission will be co-chaired by Børge Brende, Foreign Minister of Norway, and John Baird, Foreign Minister of Canada.

September 22, 2014
IPI Hosts Ministers, Officials at Annual Mideast Dinner
On Monday, September 22nd, IPI held its Ninth Ministerial Dinner on the Middle East in its Trygve Lie Center for Peace, Security, and Development. The working dinner saw the participation of foreign ministers and other high-level representatives from the Middle East and North Africa, Europe, and beyond.

View More