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From Civil Strife to Peace Building

Examining Private Sector Involvement in West African Reconstruction

Hany Besada, editor

Studies in International Governance Series

Paper 312 pp.

ISBN13: 978-1-55458-052-1

Release Date: October 2009

Online discount: 25%

$42.99  $32.24


eBook availability

From Civil Strife to Peace Building examines peace-building efforts in the fragile West African states of Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Côte d’Ivoire, with a focus on the role of the private sector in leading the reconstruction initiatives. Given that aid and debt relief, the traditional remedies for dependency and underdevelopment, have not been effective, the private sector is increasingly viewed as a major player in the revival of regional economies. Private sector support, however, requires government intervention to improve investment climates, curb corruption, strengthen the security sector, and reduce the cost of doing business.

The contributors discuss ways in which West African governments can encourage the greater involvement of business in humanitarian support with incentives that demonstrate alignment with business objectives and profit margins, making humanitarian support simple and, more importantly, profitable and sustainable for both local and foreign investors.

Co-published with the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI)

Hany Besada is a Senior Researcher: Development Cooperation at the North-South Institute (NSI) in Ottawa, Canada. He was formerly a Senior Researcher and Program Leader at CIGI where he oversaw the Health and Social Governance Program. He has worked at the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA), Amnesty International, United Nations Associations, the Joan Kroc Institute of Peace and Justice (IPJ), and the Office of U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein. He is the editor of Zimbabwe: Picking Up the Pieces (Palgrave, 2011), Crafting an African Security Architecture: Addressing Regional Peace and Conflict in the 21st Century (2010), From Civil Strife to Peace Building: Examining Private Sector Involvement in West African Reconstruction (WLU Press, 2009) and Unlocking Africa’s Potential: The Role of Corporate South Africa in Strengthening Africa’s Private Sector (2008).


“I am certain that those who are working on private-sector reconstruction—not just in Liberia, Côte dIvoire, and Sierra Leone, but in other fragile states as well—will learn from the practices, assessments, and analyses offered by the practitioners and private-sector development experts that this volume brings together.”

— Jonathan G. Coppel, Executive Program Manager, NEPAD-OECD Africa Investment Initiative (from the Foreword)

“The success of post-conflict reconstruction operations depends fundamentally on domestic, not external, actions. Similarly key to long-term stability is finding the means to grow the economy and provide jobs, especially for large numbers of young people. Properly harnessed, their energy could offer tremendous development potential, but unemployed and alienated they could be a damaging source of social destabilization. From Civil Strife to Peace Building makes an important and overdue contribution by putting the private sector at the heart of this endeavour, without whose central involvement post-conflict operations are doomed, inevitably, to fail.”

— Dr. Greg Mills, Director: The Brenthurst Foundation (2005—) Special Adviser to the Commander: International Security Assistance Force IX, Afghanistan (2006); Strategy Adviser: President of Rwanda (2008)