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Staatskollaps

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Daniel Lambach
added 2 research items
State collapse is a highly consequential event. But we know very little about the reasons why and how states lose their capacities of violence control, rule-making and taxation. In order to explore the underlying causal mechanisms, we use a nested analysis combining Qualitative Comparative Analysis and comparative process-tracing. While the mobilisation of armed opposition groups is a necessary condition for state collapse, it only works in concurrence with other conditions, namely political transitions, repression, factionalism, intra-elite rivalry and external interventions. Thus, the article presents a causal model that shows the alternative pathways leading to state collapse.
Why do some fragile states collapse while others do not? This article presents results from a comparative analysis of the causes of state collapse. Using a dataset of 15 cases of state collapse between 1960 and 2007, we conduct both synchronic and diachronic comparisons with two different control groups of fragile states using crisp-set QCA. The results support our hypothesis that state collapse has multiple causes. The militarization of political groups, when combined with other conditions, plays a major part in the process. Other causal factors are political transition, extreme poverty, declining government resources or external aid, factionalist politics, repression and pre-colonial polities. This challenges structuralist explanations focusing on regime types and the resource curse, among other things, and opens up avenues for further research.
Daniel Lambach
added a research item
The focus of the development discourse has shifted over the last few years. Whereas notions of good governance enjoyed a clear ideological hegemony during the 1990s, their position is now being challenged by the rediscovery of “state-building” concepts. With regard to this development, this essay makes three central claims: 1. The state-building concept emerged, first of all, out of a growing unease with the ineffectiveness of aid in difficult environments and out of the realization that political conditionalities had led to the marginalization of “poor performers”. Its subsequent rise is due to the “securitization” of development policy after 9/11. Since then, different political and academic actors have managed to find a common language to formulate policies for “difficult partnerships”. 2. This language, however, misses the dynamics and idiosyncratic rules of local settings which effectively determine the success or failure of state-building projects. We argue that the local dynamics of state-building are mainly shaped by the reproduction modes and legitimization strategies of local elites whose behaviour is constrained by local institutions and who have to secure legitimacy from relevant segments of the population. Experience from case studies confirms that ideal-type models of state-building are never implemented. Instead, we find a great variety of socio-political orders and very different development paths in the emergence or non-emergence of statehood. 3. State-building in a globalized world is a contested arena in which local, national and international perceptions and interests are not necessarily compatible or reconcilable. The rationale of external actors derives from ideas which are generated by the self-referential logics of bureaucracies and think tanks. Instead of offering realistic options for state-building, this approach is so removed from conditions “on the ground” that it is part of the problem rather than the solution. At the same time, international intervention impacts as an intervening variable on opportunities and choices of local elites. These elites often develop remarkable skill and finesse in capitalizing on selected parts of the “state-building agenda” to advance their own goals. Development research should focus more on how these two worlds interact and influence each other.
Daniel Lambach
added 9 research items
Im Anschluss an die bisher vorgenommene Analyse des kolumbianischen Staatszerfalls und Bürgerkriegs aus unterschiedlichen theoretischen Perspektiven möchten wir nun, im abschließenden Kapitel des ersten Teils unseres Buches, die grundlegenden politischen Konflikte Kolumbiens in ihrer Gesamtheit skizzieren. Im zweiten Teil werden wir den Blick dann auf den inter- und transnationalen Kontext dieser Konflikte richten.
Ein besonders instruktives Beispiel für die parallele Transformation des kolumbianischen Konflikts durch zwischengesellschaftliche und zwischenstaatliche Regionalisierung einerseits sowie die von außene Regionalisierung andererseits stellt Ecuador dar. Im Rahmen des Plan Colombia erhielt Ecuador im Jahr 2000 eine Unterstützung von 20 Millionen US-Dollar, wovon 12 Millionen für die Bekämpfung der Drogenindustrie und die übrigen acht Millionen für Programme alternativer Entwicklung bestimmt waren. Darüber hinaus wurden 61,3 Millionen US-Dollar für die Einrichtung einer Militärbasis in Manta bereitgestellt, die der Luftüberwachung im Rahmen der Drogenbekämpfung dient. Im Rahmen der Andean Regional Initiative wurden Ecuador weitere 76,48 Millionen US-Dollar Unterstützung durch die USA bewilligt, wovon 56,48 Millionen sozioökonomische Hilfe darstellen. Zu den Verwendunszwecke dieser Gelder gehören die Förderung der Entwicklung der Grenzregionen, Armutsbekämpfung, Justizreformen, Umweltprogramme, Drogenbekämpfung, Massnahmen zur Sicherung der Nordgrenze und die Verbesserung der Kontrolle von Wasser- und Luftwegen.
Obwohl es zunächst paradox erscheinen mag, zeichnet sich Kolumbien—vor allem im im lateinamerikanischen Vergleich—durch eine hohe Kontinuität demokratischer Institutionen aus.219 In Kolumbien finden seit über hundert Jahren ohne große Unterbrechungen regelmäßig Wahlen statt, die zu einer zivilen Regierungsbildung führen. Das Militär hat, bis auf wenige Ausnahmen, stets eine untergeordnete Rolle im politischen Leben gespielt. Seit der Verfassungsreform von 1991 scheint die kolumbianische Demokratie geradezu vollendet. Eine Vielzahl von Parteien kann sich am demokratischen Wettbewerb beteiligen, die Opposition wird von der Verfassung anerkannt und politische Minderheiten haben immer größere Partizipationsmöglichkeiten. Auch die Pressefreiheit ist per Verfassung garantiert.
Daniel Lambach
added 4 research items
At the beginning of the 21st century, fragile statehood has become a defining issue for development policy. The implications that a lack of state capacity has for development are manifold, including threats to physical security, an ineffective public administration, and a lack of basic social services (e.g. in education, health, and energy). As a result, standard methods of development cooperation are faced with the challenge of how to adapt to these „difficult partnerships“. Accordingly, donors have been engaged in a major debate which has been going on at least since 2001. Among the key actors of this debate have been the World Bank, the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee (DAC) as well as various national governments. The discussion is based on three assumptions shared by these contributors: (1) Political conditionality is of little use when dealing with fragile states, (2) The mid‐ to long‐term goals of cooperation are supporting reform processes and building state capacity, and (3) Innovative approaches employing non‐ and sub‐state actors as local partners have to be explored. This report provides a survey of the debate, outlining the central characteristics of the individual approaches and showing their commonalities, strengths and deficits. After situating the issue of fragile statehood in current world politics, we discuss the concepts and approaches of five central donors: the World Bank, OECD/DAC, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Germany. This serves to give a brief history of the debate and points out similarities and differences between the various positions. Having discussed the political debate, we then turn to the academic discourse. Here, we first discuss the transition literature which mainly focused on weak states in Central and Eastern Europe as well as research on governance (in particular the World Governance Survey). We find that these strands of research have relevant contributions to make to the policy debate which have hitherto received little attention outside of academia. In our conclusion, we discuss possible avenues for further research.
The article outlines recent changes in the development policy approach towards fragile states. Central to this new approach is a greater sensitivity towards the conditions in the partner country and a greater focus on change agents and turnaround situations. This approach has revitalised the concept of state-building. The article claims that the current understanding of the term is too narrow and offers an outline of the concept of 'embedded state-building' which recognises the societal context of political reform. This approach offers the greatest possibility of success in 'difficult environments'.
Daniel Lambach
added a research item
This article aims to show how the emerging new concept of state-building, bringing together governance, security and crisis prevention concerns, can be traced back to significant re-orientations in development thinking among the major donor organizations over the last twenty years and its adaption to new challenges. Our starting point is the emergence of the “good governance” approach into development discourse towards the end of the 1980s and its rise to fame during the 1990s. In the early years of the new millennium, we diagnose a bifurcation of the discourse discussed in the second part: On the one hand, the U.S. Millennium Challenge Account continued to reward “good performers”, on the other hand, other studies pointed out the deficiencies of political conditionality which led to the discussion about how to deal effectively with what came to be called “difficult partners”. Third, we analyze how 9/11 transformed the discourse by putting the stabilization of states into the foreground which is closely tied to a securitization of the governance discourse. Finally we outline a recent shift in focus away from “all-inclusive” models of good governance towards differentiated approaches to better capture the complex realities in crisis regions.
Daniel Lambach
added 20 research items
Today, Joel Migdal sets forth in his seminal work Strong Societies and Weak States, “for those of us in the West, the state has been part of our natural landscape. Its presence, its authority, its place behind so many rules that fashion the minutiae of our lives, have all been so pervasive that it is difficult for us to imagine the situation being otherwise.” However, while the state might occupy a privileged place in our collective thinking, its empirical reality in large parts of the world is (and will continue to be) much more complex. Therefore, Migdal cautions: “What may seem as much a part of the natural order as the rivers and the mountains around us is, in fact, an artifact of a small segment of human history.” In his work, Migdal looks at a kind of politics that does not take place within the framework of the sovereign state. Instead, the actors involved in this process come from groups in society (e.g, ethnic, cultural, local) as well as from state institutions. It is this kind of state-society interaction that lies at the root of the little understood problem of stateness. In its extreme form, the stateness problem becomes all too visible in the form of the failed state which is unable to rule its territory and its people in any meaningful way. But this occurs only in a minority of countries. Such highly publicized cases notwithstanding, all of which create enormous amounts of human suffering, there are many more instances where the state only has limited authority over many social institutions. Even though some of these states wield formidable military might, they are frequently unable to collect taxes, conduct a census or implement the most basic of policies at the local level. On the whole, these states are unable to govern their rural areas, border regions and hinterlands to any substantial degree.
Daniel Lambach
added 7 research items
This paper proposes a theoretically grounded and methodologically rigorous conceptualisation of state collapse. It seeks to overcome several key deficits of research into fragile, failed and collapsed states, which is often criticised as normatively problematic and methodologically deficient. We argue that this is a worthwhile topic to study but that scholarly inquiry needs to become more systematic and focus on extreme cases of state collapse. Following a Weberian institutionalist tradition, we disaggregate statehood into three dimensions of state capacity: making and enforcing binding rules, monopolising the means of violence and collecting taxes. We then propose a set of indicators as well as a mode of aggregation based on necessary and sufficient conditions. Our framework identifies 17 cases of state collapse in the postcolonial era.