When the Dayton peace agreement was signed in 1995, there were expectations among the signatories, the Bosnian population, and the international community alike that the pact would not only end conflict among Bosnia’s three armies, but also establish a political and social foundation for more robust peace. Recognizing that the latter goal—incorporating political reform and democratization, consolidating a multiethnic state, and economic reconstruction and development—remains significantly unmet, Cousens and Cater explore the reasons for the only limited success.

Was the agreement fundamentally flawed, or is the disappointing progress more attributable to weaknesses in implementation? Does the fault lie outside the country, or with the Bosnians themselves? Considering these and other questions, the authors examine the choices made, as well as the constraints faced, by those seeking a lasting peace in Bosnia.

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