International-local Linkages in Multi-stakeholder Partnerships Involved in Reconciliation, Inter-communal Bridge-building and Confidence-building

Abstract

This paper focuses on the involvement of the international community (international actors) in post-conflict reconstruction in the context of multi-stakeholder partnerships (MSPs) operating in the issue-area of reconciliation, inter-communal bridge-building and confidence-building. In particular, the paper analyses the international-local linkages within the MSPs, and suggests that although the involvement of the international community in post-conflict reconstruction (peace-building) is heavy and indispensable, it is neither straight-forward nor problem-free. In order to understand these linkages in a specific MSP context, a number of factors need to be taken into account and analysed. The paper suggests that at least three levels of analysis are required in order to understand the role of the international community and the international-local linkages in the context of MSPs addressing reconciliation, confidence-building and inter-community bridge-building in a post-conflict context. Firstly, the very complex nature of the international community itself, with many different actors seeking to achieve their own objectives in a very competitive environment; secondly, the very difficult conditions in war-torn societies that are operationally/institutionally unable to begin any peace-building processes on their own; and thirdly, the characteristics (motivations, organisation) of international and domestic actors themselves

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