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Research Report

Growth and Equity in Fragile States

Rolf Maier
Copyright Date: Mar. 1, 2010
Published by: Clingendael Institute
Pages: 47

Table of Contents

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  1. (pp. None)
  2. (pp. None)
  3. (pp. i-ii)
  4. (pp. 1-2)

    This paper is the second part of a research project on economic development in post-conflict and fragile countries, a cooperation between the Clingendael Conflict Research Unit (CRU) and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in which CRU provides the Ministry with policy-oriented research on issues of security and development. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Ministry.

    The first part of the project researched the question of early recovery in post-conflict countries. Key questions were the relations and trade-offs between the strategic objectives of peace-building as well as security and...

  5. (pp. 3-6)

    The purpose of this chapter is to give a brief overview of concepts of fragility, the present possible features of fragile countries, and to discuss problems with measurement indices.

    Before we start with an in-depth analysis of potential structural causes of fragility, we have to clarify the scope and content of the term ‘fragile state’ and ‘fragility’. In general, the terms describe a heterogeneous group of countries with problems of governance, security, and development. Other labels applied are ‘failing’ states, ‘failed’ states, ‘collapsed’ states, or ‘crisis states’.¹ While the terms’ purpose is to capture real-world facts, the problem of stigmatising...

  6. (pp. 7-30)

    Fragility by definition encompasses aspects of political violence and conflict, weak institutions and states, and low levels of economic and social development. This chapter aims to discuss the complex interplay between economic, institutional and political constraints of fragility.

    While the discourse on ‘fragile states’ mainly starts from the state-building (and peace-building) perspective as a necessary prerequisite to development and transformation, we also include in the discussion possible economic explanations for poverty traps. One reason is that fragility is also defined by low levels of economic and social performance, which may result from constraints other than security or governance. A second...

  7. (pp. 31-32)

    What does the debate tell us about how inclusive growth can be achieved in fragile states? The discussion presented a variety of internal and external structural factors impeding long-term growth in fragile states. Here, we will not present specific recommendations for economic or institutional policy options, which has to be based on a country analysis. In contrast, we will look at general prescriptions for inclusive growth.

    The key insight of the economic growth theory is that high rates of accumulation of physical and human capital as well as technical progress may have a positive influence on growth. The critical question...

  8. (pp. 33-41)