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State Fragility: Concept and Measurement

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  • Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina N.
  • McGillivray, Mark

Abstract

The international donor community has grave concerns about the prospects for poverty reduction in what it terms fragile states. A state is classified as fragile if its country policy and institutional assessment (CPIA) score falls below a particular threshold. Recognizing that all states are fragile to varying degrees, this paper questions the method used by the international community to deem a country fragile. This paper develops a framework that uses fuzzy-set theory to deem a country as fragile. Fuzzy sets allow for gradual transition from one state to another while also allowing one to incorporate rules and goals, and hence are more appropriate for measuring outcomes that are ambiguous. Such ambiguity is an inherent characteristic of cross-country fragility classifications. The paper applies its framework to 76 low-income countries, for which the CPIA data are publicly available. The fragile state group that this framework provides is compared to that which the international donor community has constructed.

Suggested Citation

  • Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina N. & McGillivray, Mark, 2008. "State Fragility: Concept and Measurement," WIDER Working Paper Series 044, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  • Handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:rp2008-44
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    File URL: http://www.wider.unu.edu/sites/default/files/rp2008-44.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Mina Baliamoune-Lutz & George Mavrotas, 2009. "Aid Effectiveness: Looking at the Aid-Social Capital-Growth Nexus," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(s1), pages 510-525, August.
    2. Collier, Paul & Dollar, David, 2001. "Can the World Cut Poverty in Half? How Policy Reform and Effective Aid Can Meet International Development Goals," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1787-1802, November.
    3. Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina N., 2004. "On the Measurement of Human Well-being: Fuzzy Set Theory and Sen's Capability Approach," WIDER Working Paper Series 016, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    4. McGillivray, Mark, 2006. "Aid Allocation and Fragile States," WIDER Working Paper Series DP2006/01, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    5. David Dollar & Craig Burnside, 2000. "Aid, Policies, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 847-868, September.
    6. Branchflower, Andrew & Hennell, Sarah & Pongracz, Sophie & Smart, Malcolm, 2004. "How Important Are Difficult Environments To Achieving The Mdgs?," PRDE Working Papers 12821, Department for International Development (DFID) (UK).
    7. Collier, Paul & Dollar, David, 2002. "Aid allocation and poverty reduction," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(8), pages 1475-1500, September.
    8. Torres, Magui Moreno & Anderson, Michael, 2004. "Fragile States: Defining Difficult Environments For Poverty Reduction," PRDE Working Papers 12822, Department for International Development (DFID) (UK).
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    Cited by:

    1. Wim Naudé, 2010. "Africa And The Global Economic Crisis: A Risk Assessment And Action Guide," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 27, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
    2. Oasis Kodila-Tedika & Remy Bolito-Losembe, 2014. "Corruption et Etats fragiles africains," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 26(1), pages 50-58.
    3. Patrick GUILLAUMONT & Sylviane GUILLAUMONT JEANNENEY, 2009. "State fragility and economic vulnerability: What is measured and why?," Working Papers P07, FERDI.
    4. Kodila-Tedika , Oasis, 2014. "Forget your gods: African evidence on the relation between state capacity and cognitive ability of leading politicians," European Economic Letters, European Economics Letters Group, vol. 3(1), pages 7-11.
    5. Mina Baliamoune-Lutz, 2007. "Institutions, Trade, and Social Cohesion in Fragile States," ICER Working Papers 24-2007, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
    6. Mina Baliamoune, 2009. "Policy Reform and Aid Effectiveness in Africa," ICER Working Papers 19-2009, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
    7. José Ernesto Amorós Espinosa & Luciano Ciravegna & Vesna Mandakovic & Pekka Stenmolm, 2017. "Necessity or opportunity? the effects of State fragility and economic development on entrepreneurial efforts," Serie Working Papers 42, Universidad del Desarrollo, School of Business and Economics.
    8. Rachael Calleja & David Carment & Mark Haichin & Peter Tikuisis, 2017. "Backsliding and reversal: The J-Curve revisited," WIDER Working Paper Series 170, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    9. Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina, 2009. "Institutions, trade, and social cohesion in fragile states: Implications for policy conditionality and aid allocation," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 877-890, November.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    fragile states; policies; institutional performance; CPIA scores; fuzzy set theory;

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