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Democratization via Elections in an African “Narco-state”? The Case of Guinea-Bissau

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  • Dirk Kohner

    ()
    (GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies)

Abstract

Recent development cooperation with Guinea-Bissau, focusing on good governance, statebuilding and conflict prevention, did not contribute to democratization nor to the stabilization of volatile political, military and economic structures. The portrayal of Guinea- Bissau as a failed “narco-state”, as well as Western aid meant to stabilize this state, are both based on dubious concepts. Certainly, the impact of drug trafficking could endanger democratization and state-building if continued unchecked. However, the most pressing need is not state-building facilitated by external aid that is poorly rooted in the social and political fabric of the country. Rather, it is grassroots nation-building that is a pre-condition for the creation of viable state institutions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies in its series GIGA Working Paper Series with number 123.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:gig:wpaper:123

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Keywords: Guinea-Bissau; elections; democratization; informal institutions; aid; nationbuilding; institution building; drug trafficking;

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References

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  1. Simeon Djankov & José Garcia Montalvo & Marta Reynal-Querol, 2005. "The curse of aid," Economics Working Papers, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra 870, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  2. Collier, Paul, 2006. "Is Aid Oil? An Analysis Of Whether Africa Can Absorb More Aid," World Development, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 34(9), pages 1482-1497, September.
  3. Tobias Hagmann & Markus V. Hoehne, 2009. "Failures of the state failure debate: Evidence from the Somali territories," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(1), pages 42-57.
  4. Barry, Boubacar-Sid & Gacitua-Mario, Estanislao & Wodon, Quentin, 2007. "Conflict, Livelihoods, and Poverty in Guinea-Bissau: An Overview," MPRA Paper 11115, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Dani Rodrik & Romain Wacziarg, 2005. "Do Democratic Transitions Produce Bad Economic Outcomes?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 50-55, May.
  6. Dirk Kohnert, 2009. "New Nationalism and Development in Africa," Africa Spectrum, Institute of African Affairs, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 44(1), pages 111-123.
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Cited by:
  1. Miriam Shabafrouz, 2010. "Fuel for Conflict or Balm for Peace? Assessing the Effects of Hydrocarbons on Peace Efforts in Algeria," GIGA Working Paper Series, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies 132, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
  2. Armando Barrientos & Daniel Neff, 2010. "Attitudes to Chronic Poverty in the “Global Village”," GIGA Working Paper Series, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies 134, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
  3. Karl Hwang, 2010. "Measuring Geopolitical Power in India: A Review of the National Security Index (NSI)," GIGA Working Paper Series, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies 136, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.

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