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Fragile and Conflict-affected Situations


Some 1.5 billion people live in countries affected by violent conflict and, since 2000, the International Development Association (IDA) of the Bank has provided over US$5.9 billion in post-conflict reconstruction assistance to fragile and conflict-affected countries. In the past decade, the almost continuous economic growth in developing countries has raised more people out of poverty than at any previous time. But this success has contrasted with the intractable poverty of a core group of fragile and conflicted-affected countries. Despite all efforts, for these countries, achieving the 2015 Millennium Development Goals is a distant goal.

The World Development Report 2011: Conflict, Security, and Development examines the changing nature of violence in the 21st century, and underlines the negative impact of repeated cycles of violence on a country or region’s development prospects. Preventing violence and building peaceful states that respond to the aspirations of their citizens requires strong leadership and concerted national and international efforts.

The World Bank Definition of Fragility

The World Bank defines a set of fragile situations. A fragile situation is defined as having either: a) a composite World Bank, African Development Bank and Asian Development Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment rating of 3.2 or less; or b) the presence of a United Nations and/or regional peace-keeping or peace-building mission (e.g. African Union, European Union, NATO), with the exclusion of border monitoring operations, during the past three years.

The World Bank's Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA)

The Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA) data is used to assess the quality of country policies and CPIA ratings are a key determinant of the IDA Performance Based Allocations system, CPIA data have been publicly disclosed for IDA countries since 2004. Countries are considered “core” fragile states if their CPIA is below 3.0 or there is no data available. Countries are considered “marginal” fragile states if their CPIA score is between 3.0 and 3.2. These designations are meant to provide guidance to policymakers in working with those countries with weak governance and limited institutional capacity for development. The CPIA scores provide guidance on the “spectrum” of fragility and should not be interpreted as definitive, particularly as there is some variation and margin of uncertainty in the CPIA scores themselves.

The World Bank's Post-Conflict Indicators Framework (PCPI)

The Post-Conflict Indicators Framework (PCPI) assesses the quality of a country’s policy and institutional framework to support a successful transition and recovery from conflict, as well as to foster sustainable growth, poverty reduction and the effective use of development assistance. Its objective is to inform the allocation of resources to those countries that are eligible for IDA’s exceptional allocations, that is, post-conflict and re-engaging countries (see above). The criteria’s content reflects the emerging consensus that development challenges in post-conflict and other fragile situations require a deep understanding of the links among security, and the political, economic and social spheres. For details see here (link to Financing - b)

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