The Economics of Conflict (EoC) initiative explores the economic forces behind political violence. Building on years of Crisis Group reporting on economic topics, this effort integrates economic expertise, new data sources and quantitative analysis to complement our traditional fieldwork approach, reach new audiences and deepen our impact. The EoC initiative collaborates with the Empirical Studies of Conflict Project, a network of political scientists and economists at top U.S. universities, and was launched with a generous donation by philanthropist and Crisis Group board member Alexander Soros.
On 19 May, when G7 leaders gather in Japan, Russia’s war in Ukraine will be high on their agenda, as will China’s posture in the Asia Pacific. But several other pressing matters need their attention as well.
Overlapping crises have added to the economic burdens of many countries, particularly those already in debt. In this excerpt from the Watch List 2023, Crisis Group lays out steps the EU and its member states can take to reduce vulnerability and risks of unrest.
Anti-military groups in Myanmar have crowdfunded successfully over the past eighteen months despite regime efforts to deprive them of resources. Fundraisers should take steps to shield contributors from retribution, while international donors should work with local groups to channel aid to hard-hit civilians.
A fight for economic dominance is compounding Yemen’s humanitarian emergency and intractable war. Profiteering and manipulation by both sides risk plunging the country into a steeper decline. Within this complex conflict, the UN should pursue an economic truce just as much as a military one.
Lebanon’s imploding economy is deepening instability in the country. Public safety is further imperilled as state institutions weaken and regional tensions play out in Lebanese domestic politics. In this excerpt from the Watch List 2022, Crisis Group urges the EU and its member states to provide financial support to the Lebanese state, press for elections to be held on schedule and intensify efforts to reduce tension in the region.
Alongside the battles over territory, the parties to Yemen’s war are embroiled in fights for control of key parts of the country’s economy. The latter struggle causes great civilian suffering. The new UN envoy should make it a central task to achieve an economic truce.
Lebanon is suffering economic meltdown while its politicians dither. Reform – and fiscal relief – is unlikely before 2022 elections. While pushing for timely polls, international partners should send humanitarian assistance to ease the public’s pain, keep key infrastructure running and avert security breakdowns.
Originally published in World Politics Review
Nigeria’s latest plan for curbing herder-farmer conflict is facing obstacles, including staff and funding shortages as well as political opposition. If this initiative fails, there could be more rural violence. Abuja should work with donors to raise both money and awareness of the scheme’s benefits.
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