Belfer Center Home > People > Pierre Englebert

« Back to list of experts


Pierre Englebert



By Date


Spring 2008

"Postconflict Resolution in Africa: Flawed Ideas about Failed States"

Journal Article, International Security, issue 4, volume 32

By Pierre Englebert and Denis M. Tull

Africa has the highest percentage of failed states in the world, making it a top priority for external donors engaged in state reconstruction. Yet such efforts have a poor record of success because of three flawed assumptions shared by many donors: first, Western state institutions can be transferred to Africa; second, donors and African leaders have the same understanding of failure and reconstruction; and third, donors are capable of rebuilding Africa states. In contrast, Uganda and Somaliland have succeeded in rebuilding and without external assistance. This success suggests that donors should shift their efforts toward encouraging indigenous state-building efforts and constructive bargaining between local groups and the governments of failed African states.

Events Calendar

We host a busy schedule of events throughout the fall, winter and spring. Past guests include: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, former Vice President Al Gore, and former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev.