Department of Peace and Conflict Research

Welcome to the Programme on Governance, Conflict and Peacebuilding

 Photo: Maria Wold-Troell

Programme presentation

The Programme on Governance, Conflict and Peacebuilding is about causes of armed conflict and causes of conflict prevention and conflict resolution. It focuses on intra-state conflict situations in weak states and regions of the world. The programme aspires to pick up where the ’Greed vs. Grievance’-debate ended; and it aspires to contribute to the ongoing debate on peacemaking and peacebuilding and how to create conditions for sustainable peace in weak and war-torn states and societies. The programme is driven by a central and fundamental question: How do systems of governance and the allocation of resources within countries affect the conditions for war and peace? What do leaders do with the resources at their disposal—no matter how meager these resources may be—and why? Do they, for example, try to create conditions for legitimate rule and durable peace? Or do they, for example, decide to seek personal enrichment? What are the causal mechanisms at work in these processes? What is the respective role of various explanatory factors at different levels of analysis?

The programme investigates the interplay between governance and resources in the causation of war and peace. Whether driven by need, greed, creed or any other ambition, we analyse how actors utilise political systems/systems of governance and the externally and internally generated resources available to them to pursue various policies and objectives, and the bearing this has on either conflict causation or conflict prevention/resolution. The program involves qualitative and quantitative research, including theory development, fieldwork and large-scale data collection.

Three independent and related projects constitute the original core  of the programme, all emphasising the centrality of state legitimacy,  the need to disaggregate social phenomena, and the non-unitary  character of conflict actors. The three projects are:

As of 2011, the Programme has been expanded with a fourth project:

 The programme aspires not only to systematically shed light on some of the most acute and central puzzles of human relations, but also to foster an active dialogue on the role of governance for sustainable and strong peace, to nurture global academic and policy networks, as well as to garner funds for further research on governance, resource use, war and peace.