• Lea Skov Pedersen
The purpose of this research is to explain why civil war settlements often are followed by a recurrence of conflicts. The problem of the recurrence of civil war is widely accepted as one of the challenges for the international community in the 21st century. One of the studies on the problem states that since 1995 the number of recurring conflicts outnumbered new onsets by significant margins. In addition there appears to be a tendency for civil wars to be resolved at the battlefield rather than through negotiated settlements. This thesis will investigate the problems of civil war recurrence and the deficient negotiated settlements, in an attempt to add to the understanding of the issues and hopefully be of practical assistance to those who are involved with negotiated settlements. Specifically, this study is a deductive approach with a focus on the theories of North, Wallis and Weingast’s New Conceptual Framework, which is one of the up to date approaches to understand why some countries experience cycles of violence. Also the practical suggestions proposed by Barbara F. Walter and her explanation of why civil war settlements break down is in focus. With this theoretical framework I will attempt to test the explanatory strength by exploring three actual cases of negotiated settlements i.e. Somalia, Sierra Leone and Guatemala. The research questions that will guide this research were operationalized through the theory of Barbara F. Walter and they are: Did the country have credible institutions (political or judicial) to guarantee a settlement? Where there third-party involvement? If yes, did they enforce the settlement? Did the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration phase begin too quickly? The way I answer the questions will be through the documentary research method with the aid of secondary data compiled of scholarly reports, books and articles. The findings indicates that in the case of Sierra Leone and Guatemala, institutions (political or judicial) needs to be in place to guarantee a settlement, whereas Somalia implies that this is not the case. The second explanation of the lack of third-party involvement and enforcement receives support from the case of Guatemala and Sierra Leone, whereas Somalia is in opposition to the claim. The third explanation of the timing of Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration receives support from the case of Somalia, Sierra Leone and Guatemala. In addition I find that the New Conceptual Framework is a useful explanation when it comes to understand the institutions and organizations in the conflict affected countries. Also the understanding of why some countries experience more frequent eruptions of violence than others is useful and reliable.

Publication date29 May 2013
Number of pages80
ID: 76900676