Politics | No Category
How can leaders craft political institutions that will sustain the peace and foster democracy in ethnically divided societies after conflicts as destructive as civil wars? Under turbulent conditions the leaders of ethnic groups, governments, and international organizations face the challenge of designing political arrangements that can simultaneously meet the tests of equal representation, democratic accountability, effective governance, and political stability. At critical junctures in the transition from intense (often violent) conflict, power-sharing arrangements may offer a compromise acceptable to most ethnic elites. Philip G. Roeder and Donald Rothchild find that these short-term accommodations come with high longer-term costs: the very institutions that provide a basis to end a conflict in an ethnically divided country may hinder the consolidation of peace and democracy over the longer term.
The contributors to Sustainable Peace examine institutional settlements in Ethiopia, Lebanon, India, and South Africa as well as the Soviet successor states, south Asia, central Africa, west Africa, and the Balkans. Roeder, Rothchild, and most of the contributors conclude that power-dividing, rather than power-sharing, solutions are more likely to result in durable political compacts and peace.--John McGarry, Queen's University