Conflict Prevention and Post-Conflict Reconstruction

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    Violence in a Post-Conflict Context : Urban Poor Perceptions from Guatemala
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2001) Moser, Caroline ; McIlwaine, Cathy
    The study documents how people living in poor urban communities in Guatemala perceive violence. Specifically, it identifies the categories of violence affecting poor communities, the costs of different types of violence, the effects on violence on social capital, the interventions employed by people to deal with violence, and the causes and effects of social exclusion. The study develops a violence-capital-exclusion nexus which is an analytical framework linking different types of violence both to society's capital and to the exclusion of its poor population. To incorporate the rarely heard voices of the poor, the study uses participatory urban appraisal methodology, which emphasizes local knowledge and enables local people to analyze the problems they face and identify their own solutions. Local-level recommendations for reducing violence can be summed up in terms of six priorities: Rebuild trust in the police and judicial system. Attack the problem of alcoholism. Reduce society's tolerance for intrafamily violence. Prevent the spread of drug consumption. Transform maras (violent youth gangs) from perverse to productive social organizations. Develop mechanisms to build sustainable community-based membership organizations.
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    Urban Poor Perceptions of Violence and Exclusion in Colombia
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2000-07) Moser, Caroline ; McIlwaine, Cathy
    The study documents how people living in poor urban communities in Colombia, perceive violence, and identifies, the categories of violence affecting communities, the costs of different types of violence, the effect of violence on social capital, and the causes, and effects of social exclusion. Social institutions were identified across the nine research communities, making the distinction between those institutions benefiting the community, i.e., those creating positive social capital, and those institutions benefiting their members, while hurting the community, i.e., creating perverse social capital. The first group, which included primarily schools, and health centers, were mostly trusted, whereas those institutions dealing with the prevention of violence, such as state security, and justice institutions, were the least trusted. Interestingly, perverse organizations were the most prevalent membership organizations, including guerrilla type, and paramilitary groups, perpetrating political violence, and exercising a dominant force. The study identified avoidance, confrontation, conciliation, and other lesser strategies, as forms to deal with violence, and recommendations suggest the need to address the serious problem of displaced people, the unemployment situation, and above all, the need for peace negotiation, to abolish the pervasive nature of political violence.
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    Colombia : Essays on Conflict, Peace, and Development
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2000) Solimano, Andres ; Solimano, Andres
    A purpose of this book is to present recent World Bank analytical work on the causes of violence and conflict in Colombia, highlighting pilot lending programs oriented to promote peace and development. The Bank's international experiences in post-conflict situations in different countries and their relevance for Colombia are also examined in this volume. The identification of socio-economic determinants of conflict, violence, and reforms for peace came about as a key element of the Bank's assistance strategy for Colombia, defined in conjunction with government authorities and representatives of civil society. This report is organized as follows: After the introductory chapter, Chapter 2 provides a conceptual framework for understanding a broad spectrum of political, economic, and social violence issues; identifies the role played by both the country's history and the unequal access to economic and political power in the outbreak and resilience of political violence; and examines as costs of violence the adverse impact on Colombia's physical, natural, human, and social capital. Chapter 3 analyzes the costs of achieving peace and its fiscal implications; and indicates that exclusion and inequality rather than poverty as the main determinants of violence and armed conflict. Chapter 4 reviews the Bank's experience in assisting countries that are experiencing, or have already overcome, domestic armed conflict. The authors illustrate the relevance of these cases for Colombia.