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Journal of International Development special issue: Political Settlements


Written by Alina Rocha Menocal


Political settlements are now at the centre of international development efforts to promote more peaceful and inclusive states and societies. This special issue brings together a collection of theoretical and empirical contributions that engage critically with the political settlement concept and the question of how to navigate inclusion, with a focus on underlying politics, power and institutional dynamics, and how these influence trajectories of change. Three insights, in particular, emerge from the analysis in this issue. Firstly, the relationship between inclusion, stability, violence and resilience is complex and non-linear. Secondly, peace processes on their own are not sufficient to alter political settlements and tend to yield formalised political unsettlement instead. Lastly, processes of institutional transformation often involve trade-offs and dilemmas. Therefore, efforts to engage with political settlements need to adopt a long-term framework that overcomes idealist models of change. 

Articles in this issue include: 

  • Why Political Settlements Matter: Navigating Inclusion in Processes of Institutional Transformation (pages 551–558) by Jan Pospisil and Alina Rocha Menocal

  • Political Settlements and the Politics of Transformation: Where Do ‘Inclusive Institutions’ Come From? (pages 559–575) by Alina Rocha Menocal 


These articles are available from the Wiley Online Library with paid access. 

Jan Pospisil, Alina Rocha Menocal