Dirty Peace? The Political Economy of Peacebuilding
Scholars and practitioners alike have known for long that peacebuilding is about payoffs and expected gains for key stakeholders rather than mere goodwill. Although conflict research has spent considerable efforts on discerning "greed" or "grievance" as conflict drivers, it has so far not adequately addressed the political economy of peace processes. Peace processes are often treated as a forum where the superiority of a normative order will emerge from the competition of ideas in public discourse. This reasoning is in part responsible for the glaring gap between ambition and reality in peace processes.
The conference aims to bring together analysts and practitioners who are experts in conflict regions and have insider knowledge on bargaining. Concepts, such as the political economy of expectations, the logics of participation and consequences for setting priorities and sequencing in peacebuilding processes will be addressed during the conference that poses the overarching question: Which incentives could make a difference during negotiations towards achieving peace?
The conference will focus on the topics of "The political economy of expectations", "How inclusive, how exclusive should peacebuilding be?", "Why do conflicts 'transform': Is there a (marginal) gain in protracted conflicts?" and "Which fundamental issues must be addressed by peace agreements (power sharing, participation, equity, rights)? Lessons learned".