Building Democracy After Conflict: ‘Stateness’ First

Issue Date January 2005
Volume 16
Issue 1
Page Numbers 84-88
file Print
arrow-down-thin Download from Project MUSE
external View Citation

Read the full essay here.

Rebuilding political orders after conflict faces two conundrums. The first is that externally-provided governance can undermine the long-term ability of societies to develop their own self-sustaining indigenous political institutions. This was a problem faced by both the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq and the High Representative in Bosnia. The second conundrum is the often contradictory dictates of state-building and democracy promotion: the first seeks to build power, the second to limit it. There is ultimately no optimal way of solving either problem, though recent experience suggests that small-footprint approaches emphasizing local ownership and early transition to local control will work best.

About the Author

Francis Fukuyama is Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies. 

View all work by Francis Fukuyama