Fragile states have been a leading priority in international development thinking and practice, starting in the 1990s. This chapter looks at how donor thinking on the concept of fragility has evolved and how the statebuilding agenda emerged. It explores some frameworks that the international assistance community has developed to foster more peaceful states and societies, as well as the proposals that have been developed by a growing group of fragile states known as the g7+ towards that same goal. The chapter then analyses some of the tensions and dilemmas that are embedded in statebuilding processes. By way of conclusion, the chapter asks whether current international engagement in fragile states is fit for purpose, and what some of the challenges in ongoing donor practices are, in promoting more effective statebuilding efforts.
Alina Rocha Menocal