Institutions, Social Networks, and Conflicts in Guinea-Bissau: Results from a 2005 Survey
Guinea-Bissau endured a major conflict in 1998 and has suffered from persistent political instability since independence. After a brief review of indicators of governance in Guinea-Bissau and recent political developments, the objective of this Chapter is to provide results from a recent survey that gives insights into the opinions of the population, among others, about changes in well-being over time, trust in various institutions, sources of conflicts at the local level, and ways to deal with conflicts. There is a clear perception among citizens that there has been a decline in well-being as a result of the conflict, as well as a lack of improvement since then, at least for those in poverty who are highly vulnerable. The data suggest an increase in the lack of security after the conflict and no clear sign of improvement. The population has little trust in national institutions such as the army, the police, the judicial system, and the central government. Local conflicts often emerge because of the competition for scarce productive resources, but poorer households deal with these conflicts differently than wealthier households.
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