Category Archives: Analysis

Looking Beneath the Total Score: United States

BY NATE HAKEN As the United States heads into a heated political campaign season, candidates are beginning to frame their take on the social, economic, and political track the country is on and what they would do to calibrate those trajectories. Certainly, to listen to pundits you might suppose that the U.S. is either going […]

Read more ...

Acropolis Wow: Greece Continues on a Slippery Slope

BY SEBASTIAN PAVLOU Frequently, attention tends to focus on countries at the most fragile end of the Fragile States Index, the inherent assumption being that perhaps those are the only countries we need worry about. But just as important as focusing upon – and actively addressing – the problems besetting countries at the worst end […]

Read more ...

A Reform Agenda: Cuba Comes in from the Cold

BY PATRICIA TAFT AND KENDALL LAWRENCE At the end of 2014, Cuba suddenly became news again when U.S. President Obama announced a plan to normalize relations with the country after nearly fifty years of political and economic isolation. But even before the announcement, Cuba was already on track to be one of the most improved […]

Read more ...

A Long Way from the Orange Revolution: Ukraine’s Fall from Grace

BY HANNAH BLYTH With the memories of optimism that came with the 2004 Orange Revolution fading, 2014 saw Ukraine once again become a regular fixture in the media headlines, but this time for far less hopeful reasons. The removal of a president, incursions by Russian-backed rebel forces and conflict throughout much of the country’s east, […]

Read more ...

Total Scores Are Not All That They Seem: The Cases of Iran, Lebanon, and Russia

BY HANNAH BLYTH In viewing the annual Fragile States Index scores for a particular country, it is important to look at the underlying indicators to properly understand a country’s challenges and performance. Even where a country may have an overall trend in one direction, its individual indicators may actually be heading in very different directions. […]

Read more ...

A Tough Neighborhood: Kenya Weathers Regional Instability

BY PATRICIA TAFT AND KENDALL LAWRENCE Long considered an anchor of relative stability in East Africa, Kenya is considered to be one of the strongest emerging markets in Africa. Despite significant pressures, their economy continues impressive growth, with the World Bank projecting continued gains over the next few years. Kenya has also made significant gains […]

Read more ...

Crumbling Roads and a Health Crisis: West Africa Confronts Ebola

BY PATRICIA TAFT In December 2013 in a tiny village in Guinea, a young child fell ill and died of a disease that would come to define much of the news in 2014. The Ebola virus, previously only known in Central and East Africa, laid ravage to large swaths of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, […]

Read more ...

Beating the Odds: Nigeria Defies Predictions of Doom

BY NATE HAKEN The world is not deterministic. People have a say. If ever there was any doubt, Nigeria belied that notion with elections in March and April of this year in which the sky did not fall as just about everybody feared it might. Yes, there were reports of rigging and violence at various […]

Read more ...

Arab Spring Turns to Winter for Much of Middle East, North Africa

BY FELIPE UMAÑA Only a few years ago, much of the Fragile States Index analysis was following the aftermath of the Arab Spring. At the time, there was significant hope for the future, as the despotic regime of Muammar Gaddafi fell in Libya, similarly undemocratic regimes collapsed in Egypt and Tunisia, and other countries hastily […]

Read more ...

Widespread Violence and Insecurity Strikes the Central African Republic

BY NAKE HAKEN AND HANNAH BLYTH The Central African Republic (CAR) is a vast, beautiful land about the size of Texas, but with a fraction of its population. It is home to sprawling herds of forest elephants roaming the Dzanga-Ndoki national park along the Sangha River. Logging towns have sprung up where Muslim merchants sell […]

Read more ...

“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

Talking #mercury reduction in the small scale gold sector in Tarkwa for our #RECLAIMS #ASGM #Ghana 🇬🇭 program supported by @StateDept with @UMaT_edu_GH @WANEP_Ghana