Building Peace through Subnational Governance: The Case of Libya

By Simona Ross, Stefan Wolff, and Alexandre Marc, for The Brookings Institution. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Libya Business News.

Building peace through subnational governance: The case of Libya

Amidst the pandemic and an unprecedented economic downturn, millions of people continue to face the compounding effects of violent conflict. Disputes over control of territory and resources play an oversized role in many of these conflicts - as evident, for example, in Ethiopia, Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Myanmar.

A recent World Bank study finds that much greater attention needs to be paid to issues of subnational governance in conflict prevention and settlement. Based on experiences with conflict mitigation efforts in seven countries, the study identifies a set of factors that account for the success or failure of subnational governance reform in peace processes. It stresses that too often these critical issues are addressed too late and without sufficient detail, because subnational governance reform is sensitive, easily politicized, and hard to compromise on.

Yet failing to tackle these issues has a major and negative impact on the sustainability of peace agreements. Libya serves as an illustrative case, where subnational governance is at the heart of the ongoing conflict, as also recognized by a 2019 Brookings report.

The full report can be read here.

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