chapter  2
9 Pages

Reforming public institutions in countries recovering from conflict: A brief overview

The first signs of such evolution in the development aid agenda started in early 1990s, as a consequence of the resurgence of cosmopolitan idealism in the US foreign policy. The post cold-war era had left behind any form of dialectic confrontation between distinct ideas on global development. Mankind’s ideological evolution was believed to be at its end point, with the victory of Western liberal democracy over any other possible political philosophy.2 The resumption of ‘statebuilding’3 (or ‘nation-building’ in American literature)4 doctrine followed the universalization of this theory, which was mostly implemented as a one-way, top-down transfer of knowledge from ‘civilized’ countries to weak states or countries recovering from conflict. Generally, the whole process was conceived as a path towards the formation of a legal and political civitas maxima – a concept which entails a single universal state, law and morality.5 This process entailed ‘an ideology of world order that reflects and legitimizes neoliberal values, state-centrism and the economic structure of the international system [, as a] part and parcel of a globalized “liberal peace”’.6