Breaking the Impasse in Togo

Despite a limited democratic space in Togo, civil society and the political opposition have nevertheless managed to position themselves as a force to be reckoned with. In 2005, President Gnassingbé Eyadéma died after ruling the country for almost four decades. To succeed him, the military installed the late president’s son, Gnassingbé Faure, a move that triggered popular outrage and sanctions from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union. This led to a swift return to constitutional order with elections held in April of the same year. However, political tensions then spiked again during the elections of 2010 and 2015 during which President Faure was reelected to second and third five-year terms in office, respectively. These spikes in pressure were clearly reflected in the annual trends in the Fragile States Index (FSI).

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Nepal Enjoys the Dividends of Two Decades of Difficult Decisions

Over the past 20 years, Nepal has experienced a decade-long civil war, extensive constitutional and political reforms, and horrendous natural disasters that have affected over 6 million people. Nevertheless, Nepal has demonstrated remarkable resiliency throughout these challenges to emerge as the third most improved country in the world in the 2018 Fragile States Index (FSI). The country’s score improved by 3.1 points from the previous year, making this Nepal’s best-ever score in the FSI. In 2018, Nepal improved on nine of the twelve indicators, seeing marked improvements on economic, political, and foreign policy challenges.

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Yemeni Civilians Continue to Incur the Cost of Regional Power Sharing

As the civil war in Yemen entered its fourth year, the humanitarian crisis in the country only worsened in 2017 with soaring levels of hunger and malnutrition, an unprecedented spread of cholera, and a widespread campaign of airstrikes on civilian communities. This led to Yemen scoring as the third-most worsened country in the 2018 Fragile States Index (FSI), and continued a long-term worsening trend that has seen Yemen rank as the fourth-most worsened country in the world over the past decade of the FSI, along with Libya, Syria, and Mali. The country has now worsened to become the third-most fragile state in the world.

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No Confidence: Political In-Fighting Continues to Plague South Africa

South Africa grabbed the headlines for all the wrong reasons in 2017 with political brawls, corruption allegations, cabinet reshuffles and political infighting. In August, South African President Jacob Zuma narrowly survived an eighth vote of no confidence in his leadership, only to be usurped as leader of the African National Congress (ANC) Party by Cyril Ramaphosa in December. These events follow long-running claims of corruption against Zuma and his cohort. Under former president Thabo Mbeki, Zuma was dismissed from his role as Vice-President after being implicated in a corruption scandal and accusations continued throughout his presidency.

But worryingly for South Africa, the Fragile States Index (FSI) also demonstrated that these were simply the latest events in a long-term decline. In the 2017 FSI, South Africa ranked as the most-worsened country over the preceding decade that was not in a state of conflict, with a ten-year worsening trend that was matched only by the likes of war-torn Libya and Syria for the magnitude of its negative rate-of-change.

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Taken to the Cleaners: As Brazil Faces Significant Challenges, Hope May be in Sight

Brazil continued the four-year slide that began in 2014, the year that saw the beginning of Operação Lava Jato (“Operation Car Wash”) as well as the global crash of commodity prices that had driven the Brazilian boom in growth that had helped lift tens of millions out of poverty. In contrast, the intervening years have seen the country roiled by surging unemployment and widening corruption investigations that threaten to engulf the entire political system. These difficulties have encompassed most of the pressures covered by the Fragile States Index, with fully two-thirds of its indicators seeing a significant decline.[1] This year, however, the rate of worsening slowed substantially, with Brazil’s total score increasing by only 0.5 points and, although serious challenges remain, the first tentative signs of economic recovery may be evident.

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The Fragile State Index for 2018 is available. This dataset is helpful for predicting #refugee #relief #governance issues, etc. https://t.co/DBOujTCEqg - Thank you @fundforpeace for stewarding this important data #knowledgestewardship

Proud to work alongside so many organizations dedicated to making the #NigerDelta strong & stable, including @PINDFoundation @fundforpeace @DAIGlobal @USAIDNigeria @DFIDNigeria @NigeriaSACE @P4P_NigerDelta https://t.co/zAvO4iihmV

"#Togo is now entering another election period, and once again pressures are beginning to rise." -- Read our analysis in the 2018 #FragileStatesIndex https://t.co/Q67hyggLxJ

The Fragile State Index for 2018 is available. This dataset is helpful for predicting #refugee #relief #governance issues, etc. https://t.co/DBOujTCEqg - Thank you @fundforpeace for stewarding this important data #knowledgestewardship

Proud to work alongside so many organizations dedicated to making the #NigerDelta strong & stable, including @PINDFoundation @fundforpeace @DAIGlobal @USAIDNigeria @DFIDNigeria @NigeriaSACE @P4P_NigerDelta https://t.co/zAvO4iihmV

"#Togo is now entering another election period, and once again pressures are beginning to rise." -- Read our analysis in the 2018 #FragileStatesIndex https://t.co/Q67hyggLxJ