Local-International Relations and the Recalibration of Peacebuilding Interventions Insights from the ‘Laboratory‘ of Bougainville and Beyond

Volkder Boege, Patricia Rinck, Tobias Debiel
Content Type
Working Paper
Institute for Development and Peace
The report addresses the micro-level as a key dimension of post-conflict peacebuilding interventions, with a particular focus on the relationships and interactions of international and local actors. What changes do occur with regard to their perceptions, expectations, attitudes and activities in the course of interactions? Can we identify experiences and mechanisms that lead to a re-articulation of relationships and interactions and, consequently, a recalibration of the overall peacebuilding exercise, e.g. with regard to more (or less) cooperation, more (or less) mutual trust, more (or less) animosities and misunderstandings, and more (or less) legitimacy? These questions are addressed through an in-depth case study, at the core of which are narrative, problem-centred interviews with international and local actors who were and/or are engaged in the peacebuilding process on Bougainville. Bougainville is regarded as a kind of ‘laboratory’ in which international/local relations and interactions are rather direct, because national institutions play a relatively small role, and external actors are present upon invitation not only by national, but also local actors. The exploration of the Bougainville case is complemented by a plausibility probe in a case with contrasting conditions, Sierra Leone.
Peacekeeping, Conflict, Local, Humanitarian Crisis
Political Geography
Africa, West Africa, Sierra Leone