Weak states? A pursuit for a weak state definition and feasible reconstruction theories

University essay from Lunds universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Abstract: This thesis has two aims. One is to present a definition and demarcation of the much used but seldom defined term weak state. The thesis identifies a connection between sovereignty and state weakness, and suggests lack of so called domestic sovereignty as a demarcated definition of the term. This implies a focus on domestic peace and institutional stability rather than lack of autonomy, recognition, democracy or legitimacy. The second objective is to discuss three different ideas how to improve the international community's ability to help reconstruct weak states (i.e. gain domestic sovereignty). The ideas are: Establish guardianship, institutionalise conflict response and involving sub-national groups. The thesis analyses the strategies and concludes that in the complex world of the international community, the most radical ideas are hindered by international law or lack of political will. The thesis can however point out a few feasible suggestions to make reconstruction more efficient.

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