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Structural Stability: On the Prerequisites of Nonviolent Conflict Management

  • Andreas Mehler

    ()

    (GIGA Institute of African Affairs)

  • Ulf Engel

    ()

    (Institute of African Studies and Centre for Advanced Study, University of Leipzig)

  • Lena Giesbert

    ()

    (GIGA Institute of African Affairs)

  • Jenny Kuhlmann

    ()

    (University of Leipzig)

  • Christian von Soest

    ()

    (GIGA Institute of African Affairs)

The concept of “structural stability” has been gaining prominence in development policy circles. In the EU’s and the OECD Development Assistance Committee’s (OECD DAC) understanding, it describes the ability of societies to handle intra-societal conflict without resorting to violence. This study investigates the preconditions of structural stability and tests their mutual interconnections. Seven dimensions are analyzed: (1) long-term economic growth, (2) environmental security, (3) social equality, (4) governmental effectiveness, (5) democracy, (6) rule of law, and (7) inclusion of identity groups. The postulated mutual enhancement of the seven dimensions is plausible but cannot be proven. The most significant positive relationship appears between “democracy” and “rule of law,” respectively, on the one hand and the dependent variable “violence/ human security” on the other hand. This points to the usefulness of the political concept of structural stability to promote development policy agendas in this area at least. Applications that reach beyond these initial findings will, however, require further research.

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Paper provided by GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies in its series GIGA Working Paper Series with number 75.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:gig:wpaper:75
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  1. Richard Anderson-Connolly, 2006. "The Problem with Growth as the Solution," Challenge, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 49(1), pages 90-118, February.
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