chapter  2
19 Pages

What does conflict look like in the developing world?

ByPaul Jackson, Danielle Beswick

This chapter analyses the empirical characteristics of conflict and wars in developing states and regions. It explores whether conflict has changed significantly since the end of the Cold War, as frequently asserted by supporters of the 'new wars' thesis. The chapter identifies some of the key features of contemporary conflict that require incorporation into any debate on post-conflict development. The chapter examines questions about the nature of warfare in the developing world, including the movement away from inter-state wars and towards intra-state conflict and contested sovereignty, and the role of a range of actors, from warlords to child soldiers. The work of Cramer provides a useful critical interrogation of the ways in which conflict is measured and explores how conflicts are classified and categorised for analysis in three well-known databases on armed conflict. These databases have been used to plot both how much war is occurring and the intensity of war, based largely on battle deaths.