Category Archives: Analysis

It’s (Not) the Economy, Stupid

BY NATE HAKEN It was a rough year for the United States in 2017. It was the country’s worst year for hurricanes – Irma, Harvey, and Maria caused hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of damage in the Gulf Coast. It was the worst year for wildfires – over a million acres burned in California […]

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Scraping the Barrel: Oil-Dependent Venezuela in Free-Fall

BY HANNAH BLYTH When the 14-year rule of the populist President Hugo Chávez came to an end upon his death in 2013, Venezuela was already well down the path to instability. Chávez’s death made way for his handpicked successor Nicolás Maduro who, in stark contrast to Chávez’s cult of personality, many Venezuelans have come to […]

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Fragile States Index 2018 – Annual Report

BY J.J. MESSNER, NATE HAKEN, PATRICIA TAFT, IGNATIUS ONYEKWERE, HANNAH BLYTH, CHARLES FIERTZ, CHRISTINA MURPHY, AMANDA QUINN, MCKENZIE HORWITZ   The Fragile States Index, produced by The Fund for Peace, is a critical tool in highlighting not only the normal pressures that all states experience, but also in identifying when those pressures are pushing a state […]

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2018 Fragile States Index: Qatar Most-Worsened Country; United States Worsens Significantly Due to Social and Political Pressures

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE APRIL 23, 2018 Media Contact: Charles Fiertz, [email protected] Washington, D.C. — April 23, 2018 — Following a tumultuous year around the globe, Qatar, Spain, Venezuela, the United States and Yemen have been assessed as the world’s most-worsened countries according to the Fragile States Index, released by The Fund for Peace today. Ultimately […]

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A Nation Divided Against Itself: Internal Divisions Fuel U.S. Worsening

BY J.J. MESSNER AND CHARLES FIERTZ More than any previous year, the 2018 Fragile States Index (FSI) has demonstrated that rich and developed countries can be just as prone as any other to the effects of fragility and instability – and the United States is certainly no exception. A combination of political and social turmoil, […]

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The Gambia Demonstrates the Potential of Regional Action

BY PATRICIA TAFT AND IGNATIUS ONYEKWERE The tiny West African nation of The Gambia, a tropical country famed for its beautiful beaches, stunning vistas, and warm hospitality, has had a turbulent few years. Ruled for over two decades by President Yahya Jammeh, The Gambia experienced a progressive slide into authoritarianism from 1994 until late 2016, […]

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Resilience Drives a Remarkable Bounce Back for Mexico

BY MCKENZIE HORWITZ In the previous edition of the Fragile States Index (FSI), Mexico was the most worsened country — a decline in Mexico’s economy, the deteriorating status of refugees, and prevalent political corruption had pushed the country to the 88th position on the FSI in 2017, its worst ranking in over a decade. Indeed, […]

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The Authoritarian’s Playbook: Central Europe’s Slide Toward Illiberalism

BY CHARLES FIERTZ At the beginning of the 21st century, Hungary and Poland were frequently lauded as two of the most successful examples of democratic transitions, emerging from the shadow of communist dictatorships and joining the Euro-Atlantic community through membership in organizations such as NATO and the European Union.[1] Today the two countries are again […]

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Fragile States Index 2018: Issues of Fragility Touch the World’s Richest and Most Developed Countries in 2018

BY J.J. MESSNER It certainly felt like a tumultuous year in 2017. As the wars in Syria and Yemen ratcheted up in intensity, Qatar was suddenly politically, economically and physically isolated from its neighbors, Catalonia moved forward on its attempts to separate from Spain, Venezuela fell further into chaos, the United Kingdom continued to struggle […]

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Isolated Qatar Worsens Amid Pressure from Regional Adversaries

BY PATRICIA TAFT In a year of rapidly shifting priorities, alliances and politics across the greater Middle East, the small oil and gas-rich nation of Qatar took the greatest fall in the 2018 Fragile States Index (FSI). With a native population of barely 300,000 and a gross annual GDP of nearly US$181 billion, Qatar has […]

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“Listen to understand instead of listening to be understood,” @jjmessner. Brilliant panel on meaningful stakeholder engagement led by @AngelaUMiller about importance of building trust, communicating proactively and focusing on quality over quantity. #SW2019

Meeting with community leaders and small scale miners from Sefwi Nkatieso, Western North Region, Ghana to talk about promoting peace, sustainability and reducing use of #mercury in #ASGM