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Engagement with non-state actors in fragile states

Engagement with non-state actors in fragile states : narrowing definitions, broadening scope, Rosan Smits and Deborah Wright

Engagement with non-state actors in fragile states : narrowing definitions, broadening scope, Rosan Smits and Deborah Wright

This CRU Report presents some of the main challenges for adequate engagement with non-state actors in fragile and conflict-affected situations, and concludes that its success will rest or fall on donors engaging with a full range of non-state actors based on their assets and how their activities are relevant to the overall transitional goal rather than on their formal structure.

International actors concerned with state-building processes in fragile and conflict-affected situations increasingly acknowledge the leverage of non-state actors in building a legitimate state apparatus. However, the risk-averse nature of the current aid architecture means that aid is usually channelled through large, established INGOs to a narrow range of formally constituted local NGOs that are accountable to their donors rather than to their beneficiaries. A vast range of non-state actors many of which, in the absence of functioning institutions, will have been fulfilling roles typically assumed to be the domain of the state are left out of the picture.

This CRU Report presents the findings of a review of literature on the role and functions of non-state actors in fragile states and an analysis of international policy frameworks that guide their involvement in state-building processes. It presents some of the main challenges for the New Deal on Engagement in Fragile States, and concludes that its success will rest or fall on donors engaging with a full range of non-state actors based on their assets and how their activities are relevant to the overall transitional goal rather than on their formal structure.

Publié le 14 janvier 2013

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