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State Collapse and Reconstruction in the Periphery

State Collapse and Reconstruction in the Periphery: Political Economy, Ethnicity and Development in Yugoslavia, Serbia and Kosovo

Jens Stilhoff Sörensen
Copyright Date: 2009
Edition: NED - New edition, 1
Published by: Berghahn Books
Pages: 332
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  • Book Info
    State Collapse and Reconstruction in the Periphery
    Book Description:

    In the 1990s, Yugoslavia, which had once been a role model for development, became a symbol for state collapse, external intervention and post-war reconstruction. Today the region has two international protectorates, contested states and borders, severe ethnic polarization and minority concerns. In this first in-depth critical analysis of international administration, aid and reconstruction policies in Kosovo, Jens Stilhoff Sorensen argues that the region must be analyzed as a whole, and that the process of state collapse and recent changes in aid policy must be interpreted in connection to the wider transformation of the global political economy and world order. He examines the shifting inter- and intracommunity relations, the emergence of a "political economy" of conflict, and of informal clientelist arrangements in Serbia and Kosovo and provides a framework for interpreting the collapse of the Yugoslav state, the emergence of ethnic conflict and shadow economies, and the character of western aid and intervention. Western governments and agencies have built policies on conceptions and assumptions for which there is no genuine historical or contemporary economic, social or political basis in the region. As the author persuasively argues, this discrepancy has exacerbated and cemented problems in the region and provided further complications that are likely to remain for years to come.

    eISBN: 978-1-84545-919-2
    Subjects: Political Science, Economics, Sociology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Acknowledgements
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. Abbreviations
    (pp. ix-x)
  5. [Maps]
    (pp. xi-xiv)
  6. Introduction Aid Policy, Reconstruction and the New Periphery
    (pp. 1-9)

    The collapse of the socialist project in Eastern Europe both expressed and instituted considerable changes in international relations, in state transformations, and in aid and security policy. With the end of what was called the ‘second world’ and the consequent reshaping of the global order, the whole socialist development model was dead. Furthermore, a whole new space was opening up for global capitalism as well as for the international aid regime. The very project of the socialist state, itself for decades a model for many developing countries, now became an object of aid policy.

    Initially there was great optimism for...

  7. 1 Aid Policy Shift and State Transformation as Expressions of Globalisation
    (pp. 10-29)

    The recent, deep changes in political systems and societies in Eastern Europe, as well as elsewhere, have been approached from a variety of theoretical and analytical frameworks. The most dominant perspective has, however, been the classical neoliberal (i.e. market liberal) view focusing on problems with a transition to liberal democracy and market economy. Interpreted in the framework of democratisation and liberalisation, this perspective accommodates the (often explicit) assumption that the maintrendis a struggle for transition to democracy and market economy, accompanied by various policy prescriptions for how this is best achieved. This discourse has been widely criticised for ignoring...

  8. 2 Aid Policy and State Transformation: From Government to Governance and from Marshall Plan to Stability Pact
    (pp. 30-59)

    The premises of social reconstruction and the institutional form of governance outlined in Chapter 1 are central in the former Yugoslav space. In Kosovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina radical intervention is more possible than elsewhere, since they are under international administration. Post-Dayton reconstruction thinking for Bosnia-Herzegovina has in many respects served as a model for Kosovo following the Stability Pact for South-Eastern Europe.¹

    The Stability Pact for South-Eastern Europe was initiated by the EU following the war on Kosovo. It can be seen both as an expression of the EU countries’ efforts to achieve a common stance in foreign and security policy...

  9. 3 Small Nations in One State? The Legacy of the First Yugoslavia and the Partisan Revolution
    (pp. 60-91)

    The first Yugoslav state, created after the First World War, was a multiethnic state with great regional economic and cultural differences, carved out of the disintegrating Habsburg and Ottoman Empires, under the auspices of the Versailles Treaty and its conception of national self-determination. Although ethno-plural in composition, the state was to a large extent an attempt to incorporate the Southern Slavs (except the Bulgarians) in one independent nation-state. However, it also came to incorporate large non-Slavic minorities, such as Albanians, which were particularly concentrated in the province of Kosovo (as well as in parts of Macedonia, Montenegro and southern Serbia),...

  10. 4 Statehood Beyond Ethnicity? Socialism, Federalism and the National Question in a Developmental State
    (pp. 92-129)

    Yugoslavia experienced two extremes of socialist economy during a period of less than fifty years, with a gradual transition from one to the other. In the early years it experimented with a central planning system with depressive economic results. During the first five-year plan, which was introduced in 1947, industrial production, wages, living standards and personal consumption all declined and even fell below prewar figures.¹ But central planning was developed under the extreme conditions of postwar reconstruction and was a necessary approach to reconstruct the war-torn country (where great success was reached during the first eighteen months), free resources to...

  11. 5 Reframing Yugoslavia: From a Renegotiated State to Its Breakdown
    (pp. 130-151)

    The new federal Constitution of 1974 was both the result of extensive bargaining and compromises between various regional political and economic interests, and a logical extension of the reform process related to self-management. In the new Constitution Yugoslavia was formally and thoroughly federalised with full autonomy for the six republics (Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia) and the two autonomous provinces within Serbia (Vojvodina and Kosovo). The constitutional decentralisation ensured that all decisions could be taken on republican or provincial level, leaving only foreign policy, defence and security, and some macro-economic functions at the federal level. This new framework provided...

  12. 6 Hegemony and the Political Economy of Populism: The Emergence of the Milošević Regime and the Transformation of Serbian Society
    (pp. 152-182)

    As discussed in the previous chapter, the rise of Slobodan Milošević and his regime was based upon the merging of three different politically hot issues where the objectives (although originally different in character, origin and expression) came to be articulated and discursively formulated into a single framework along ethno-nationalist principles. The fusion of these forces around Slobodan Milošević , together with his faction within the Serbian League of Communists and the support he enjoyed within the Army, were the foundations in a new hegemonic project.¹ The alliance supporting it spanned both segments within the party, within the army leadership, groups...

  13. 7 Adaptation and Resistance in a New Social Formation: Aspects of Cohesion and Fragmentation in Serbia Proper and in Kosovo
    (pp. 183-220)

    We have discussed in Chapter 6 how the political economy, or illiberal economy, in Serbia in the 1990s brought a rapid social transformation of Serbian society. The advantages inherent in the self-management system eroded and with the formal economic decline privileges previously enjoyed by workers became even more difficult to fulfil than they had been during the economic crisis of the 1980s. The social contract and the old order eroded, while the new alliances between ‘elite networks’ and the workers brought no social security. With the rule of law and the social security system breaking down, reliance on clientelist and...

  14. 8 Postwar Governance, Reconstruction and Development in Kosovo, 1999–2007
    (pp. 221-255)

    The core problem of Kosovo’s status, and its effects on international relations and law, coupled with the new radical power shift within Kosovo Albanian society, was born into the UN administration from the outset. In Kosovo the United Nations has adopted one of the most difficult issues and tasks that the organisation has ever been confronted with. It is set to administer the whole of Kosovo, build institutions, reconstruct society, provide the conditions for self-government, and help foster a political process that eventually will provide a basis for the definition of future status. In addition to severe inter-ethnic conflict, Kosovo...

  15. 9 International Support for the Development of Civil Society
    (pp. 256-272)

    This chapter focuses on aid policy through the promotion of civil society. The objective is to analyse and highlight certain problems with the governance and aid approach in relation to civil society and the position the latter has in the new aid and governance paradigm. The term ‘civil society’ has, throughout the 1990s, become a leading buzzword in all aid policy documents among international organisations, donor governments, and the growing number of NGOs. The idea of promoting and ‘building’ civil society as a precondition for, and safeguard of, democracy and ‘modern’ liberal values has become pivotal in aid policy towards...

  16. Conclusion A Political Economy of Exclusion and Adaptation
    (pp. 273-279)

    The global political economy took a new turn in the early 1970s. Global capitalism based on US hegemony in the liberal world was facing a crisis, in which strategic decisions were taken (first in Washington) to open up national boundaries and regulations for finance capital. The Keynesian era of governing the political economy was coming to a close. By the early 1980s the international financial institutions (World Bank and IMF) were governed under a new paradigm, led by the Reagan–Thatcher move towards neoclassical economics. This was what we may call the neoliberal turn, which was taken a step further...

  17. Afterword
    (pp. 280-284)

    Political change is sometimes rapid, and this has certainly been the case in the Balkans over the past two decades. As this book is going to press the parliament of Kosovo made a declaration of independence proclaiming Kosovo to be the world’s youngest (and 193rd) state. The move was long expected, since this has been the goal of the Albanians since the early 1990s and, in particular, the goal of the more radical factions that came to power with the support of the US and NATO. Regardless of the long expected move to proclaim independence the EU had not...

  18. References
    (pp. 285-303)
  19. Index
    (pp. 304-318)