State-Building, State Fragility, and Interventions

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    The starting point of any statebuilding discussion is state fragility or state weakness broadly understood—that is what is to be ‘corrected’ or addressed through statebuilding interventions. There is a wide consensus among researchers and practitioners on the importance of statebuilding in contemporary world politics. One of the implications of the institutional approach to statebuilding is the undue focus on state capacity which enables intervenors to legitimize all forms of international interventions—including international administrations. Social cohesion considerations have been increasingly taken on board by policy-makers, mostly through disappointment with mixed results of top-down ‘coalition’ interventions in Iraq, Afghanistan, but also UN-led peacebuilding interventions in Kosovo or Timor-Leste. The social legitimacy approach has a number of implications for statebuilding issues. Following this approach, ‘state collapse’ is not only driven by institutional collapse, but also by the collapse of the legitimacy of the central authority.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Peace, Security and Development
    Editors Fen Osler Hampson, Alpaslan Ozerdem and Jonathan Kent
    Place of PublicationLondon
    ISBN (Print)9780815397854
    Publication statusPublished - 2020


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