The Failed States Index, produced by The Fund for Peace, is a critical tool in highlighting not only the normal pressures that all states experience, but also in identifying when those pressures are pushing a state towards the brink of failure. By highlighting pertinent issues in weak and failing states, The Failed States Index—and the social science framework and software application upon which it is built—makes political risk assessment and early warning of conflict accessible to policy-makers and the public at large.
Published June 14, 2013 | By Krista Hendry and George Wah Williams
Over the past decade, the Liberian economy has rebounded from fourteen years of civil war. Its GDP has had measurable growth since 2004 and the African Development Bank predicts a growth rate of over 7% in 2013. This is in part due to financial and technical aid from donor countries and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) of international companies in fields like mining, timber, rubber and palm oil. The input of aid in key sectors, such as infrastructure, facilities, and power generation, has the potential to strengthen the economy and raise the income level of the population.
On 15 May 2013, President Goodluck Jonathan imposed a state of emergency in three states in northeastern Nigeria. In a televised statement , he called for “extraordinary measures to restore normalcy” in Borno, Yobe and Adawama states, where the domestic non-state armed group(s) Jama’atu Ahlus-Sunnah Lidda’Awati Wal Jihad (JAS), commonly known as Boko Haram, primarily operates. A heat map of violent incidents compiled by The Council on Foreign Relations’ Nigeria Security Tracker and collated by Partners for Peace shows the relative distribution of grievance-driven insecurity in the period between January and April 2013.
Published April 9, 2013 | By Kennan Hedrick
As pressure from Israel builds and international sanctions against Iran continually weaken the Iranian economy, President Obama has repeatedly asserted his policy to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran and his willingness to use force if necessary. In light of this policy, what is the best strategy to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran, and how should the U.S. pursue this strategy? To answer this question, this analysis evaluates U.S.-led military action, United Nations Security Council (UNSC) authorized use of force, and the dual-track strategy of sanctions and negotiations. Given the high costs of military action and the inability of the UNSC to authorize the use of force against Iran, maintaining a dual-track strategy is the best strategy for the U.S. to pursue to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran.
Published March 20, 2013
The Fund for Peace (FFP) is strongly committed to continuing its support of the Voluntary Principles on Security & Human Rights (VPs). We publicly endorse the VPs on our website and undertake efforts to raise public awareness of their existence as well as to support information sharing between those involved regarding implementation. We greatly welcome feedback from other participants as to how we could more strongly support the VPs going forward.
Published March 8, 2013 | By Patricia Taft, George Wah Williams
On a clear day in the middle of the dry season, it can take up to fifteen hours to travel less than 475 kilometers (350 miles) from Liberia’s capital city of Monrovia to Zwedru, the capital of Grand Gedeh County. Grand Gedeh lies in the southeast corner of Liberia, bordering Côte d’Ivoire, and has long been a restive region of the country. This is due to various factors including continued instability in Côte d’Ivoire, a large refugee population, and the lack of resources in the county.
Published March 6, 2013 | By Nate Haken
Conflict can devastate the livelihoods of people in the affected communities. But the story of the Ekowe community shows how local mediation efforts can make a big difference for peace in the Niger Delta. The footage for this video was filmed courtesy of the Rural Empowerment Foundation and facilitated by NIDPRODEV/LITE AFRICA. It was produced by the PIND Media Production Hub. The senior Peacebuilding Adviser was Robinson Ariyo.
Published February 12, 2013 | By Nóra Loncsár *
On March 4, Kenyans will once again vote for their local and national leaders. The increase in violence in the last year has raised fears among some national and international observers of the potential for another bloody ballot. In early 2007, the world watched in horror at the events unfolding in Kenya following the presidential elections. More than 1,100 people were killed and 350,000 displaced as violence engulfed the country that many had viewed as an oasis of stability in a turbulent region.
Launched in 1996, the Roundtable was the first forum designed for multinational businesses and mainstream human rights organizations to discuss issues of common concern in an atmosphere of mutual respect, trust, and confidentiality. Today, the Roundtable focuses exclusively on the extractive industry, although the lessons learned and case studies of the Roundtable provide value to all sectors. The Roundtable is an invaluable resource for corporations and NGOs to work together to promote sustainable development.
Not every explosion in northern Nigeria stems from the radicalism of Boko Haram. Nor is every outbreak of violence in the Niger Delta the result of militants fighting over oil revenues. Rather, violence in its different forms is an expression of a broader and deeper fabric of social, economic, political, and security challenges. Given the wrong set of underlying conditions, collective violence can spark seemingly out of nowhere, whether or not there is a formal paramilitary group active in the region. Even when such organizations do not exist, in an area with past and current episodes of insecurity, latent structures may still be there, to be crystallized at a moments notice--in the event of a political contest, land dispute, turf warfare, or chieftaincy tussle. Violence can sometimes be self-organizing. Just add water.