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Netherlands Chapter Fragile States by Paul Collier It is quite clear what I would like to be able to say, and I think also what you would like to hear. It is that if we only could get democracy in these fragile states all would be well. Democracy is the solution to their problems. That was more or less the diagnosis as of about 1990. By then it was clear that something had gone wrong with the African development process over above Africa being a victim, it was that something was going wrong internally in Africa which stagnated the development process. The obvious diagnosis by around 1990 was to say: „it is dictatorship. It is these awful autocracies that are more prominent in Africa than anywhere else, if only we could get rid of them thigs will be alright‟. Most of them, not all of them, were got rid off through the wave of democratization that spread in Africa and other low income fragile states following the collapse of the former Soviet Union. And tha was a pretty hopefull period and I was part of those hopes. I don‟t think they were foolish hopes. The hope was that now that we have democracy that will basically fix the problem. They were not foolish hopes, but I don‟t think they were right. My own intellecual journey from those hopes to a more bitter reality is what I am going to share with you tonight. I am going to look at two sets of questions: does democracy resolve the problem of violent conflict in Africa? Does it help? And does it resolve the problem of economic stagnation? Does it help? Let me start with democracy and violent conflict. It is quite clear why we would have thought that democracy would reduce the incidence of violent conflict. At least two things would make democracy peace-promoting in these societies. One is it would end exclusion and the other is it would confer legitimacy on governments. Both of these things, you would imagine, would be stabilizing and reduce the incentive of violence. Is that what actually happens? Well, I have looked globally at all the large scale violent conflicts and civil wars from the mid 1960‟s to 2005. I did some published work called Greed and Grievance. What I am going to draw on tonight is not this, but an unpublished paper which you can find on my website called Beyond Greed and Grievance. This work goes beyond the earlier work partly by updating with the 5 most recent years, so it goes to 2005, but more importantly, it pretty much doubles our data set of observed civil wars and it also massively increases the number of possible explanations I can measure. My whole approach in trying to understand civil wars is statistical. I see potentially that anything could be the deep cause of civil war. Whatever we can measure we put in and we will whitle it down just to see what is actually left there in a core of significant variables. What comes up is first of all? Well the same economic drivers of conflict as I have found before are still there. That is, the propensity to conflict is much more likely if your country is low income, if you got stagnation or worse, economic decline, and if you are dependent of primary commodities. That cocktail of all three: poverty, stagnation and primary comodities is a dangerous combination increasing the risk of conflict. I have also been able to study for the first time a range of things which in effect proxy the feasibility of conflict. For example, what is the terrain like: is it as flat as The Netherlands? Or as mountainous as Nepal? And I can say catergorically now that the reason why The Netherlands has not had a civil war for a long time is that you are flat! It also helps also that you are high income. One of the reasons why Nepal has conflict is that it is not flat. The risk of conflict goes up a lot if the terrain is conducive to rebel armed groups. That sort of causal explanation, things like mountainous terrain, do not fit very naturally into an explanation based on motivation. Why are rebels rebelling? Because of a lot of mountains? Motivation, I have come to conclude, does not give a lot of explanatory power. Of course there are always stories about what motivates the rebels and in one sence that accounts for what they have done, but it does not account for why it is possible in some societies for large scale organized violence to be feasible where as in other societies it is just not feasible, no matter what people‟s motivation is. So I have come to a rather depressing conclusion that usually rebelion with large scale violence is just not feasible. It is not feasible no matter what the grievances where. Is is not going to happen by definition. But where it is feasible it is going to happen. Somebody, some social entrepreneur, is going to occupy that niche. What their agenda will be, could be anything, and that seems to come out pretty strongly in the latest statistical work that proxies for feasibilities such as mountains that do a lot of the work. Now, where does democracy fit into all this? How do we measure democracy? Political scientists now have a scale to measure democracy. From extreme autocracy, - think North Korea - through all singing, all dancing democracy, - think yourselves. Is there anywhere on that spectrum that makes a difference to the risk of civil war? The answer is, it depends. Unfortunately it depends upon the interaction with the level of per capita income. It works like this: in rich societies democracy makes things much safer. In poor societies it has the opposite effect. What do I mean rich and poor? There is a level of income at which democracy makes no difference and that is about 2.500 dollars per capita per year. Above that level democracy makes things significantly safer and below it, it makes things significantly more dangerous. All the countries that I am interested in, the Africa‟s of this world, which are not just Africa but central Asia, are impoverished countries way bellow 2.500 dollars per capita income, so unfortunately we are in a range where democracy appears to increase the risk of civil war. This is as depressing for me as it might be for you. That is, if you like, the deep risks. Now let us get more precise because half of all civil wars occur in post conflict situations gone wrong. Post conflict situations are very fragile, 40% of post conflict situations get back into civil war within a decade. I looked at all post conflict situations I could find, 66 of them, and I have looked year by year to see what happens to the risk of going back into conflict during that first decade. I have seen what role democracy played in that. Again, I used a 21 point scale between the extreme autocracy of North Korea and yourselves to see if there is anywhere along the spectrum where there is change, and there is. There is a point about midway along the autocracy part of the spectrum where the risks on one side look different from the risks on the other side. But it is not something that I want to tell you or that you want to hear because the results are as follows: the risks of going back into conflict are lower in the severe autocracy bit. Outside the range of severe autocracy it really does not make much difference where along that spectrum you are. All the way along that non-extreme autocracy part of the spectrum, the risks are pretty high. As I said, the risks overall for these countries are 40% but if you rule out the range of severe autocracy the risks are more like 70%. The democracy agenda we naturally and rightly promote in these post conflict situations (and I don‟t want to oppose it) we cannot really sell as peace building unfortunately. We have to face up, I fear, to the fact that we are actually building extremely fragile situations by insisting on democracy. The message is not „don‟t do democracy‟ but „recognize that it is not the solution to these highly fragile post conflict decades‟. We better do something else to restore peace. As well as insisting on democracy and democratic constitutions and all that, we are also, as an international comunity very clear on how we implement democratic legitimacy and that is: post conflict elections. I have looked to see what post conflict elections do to the risk of revertion to conflict, the way, actually to settle things. There are 2 schools of thought of political science on this: one thinks that post conflict elections bring risks down, the other thinks that post conflict elections bring risks up and they can‟t both be right. But they can both be wrong and as far as I can see they are. Because what post conflict elections do is shift the risk from the year before the election until the year after the election. In the year before the election the risks go down a lot and in the year after the election they go up even more. Now, that is kind of worrying. Can we think why on earth might that be the case? And I think that as soon as we think why that might be the case it is blindingly obvious. In the year before the elections there are incentives to take part in the electoral contest, - you might win. So all the different players struggle politically and then after the election there is a winner and a looser. There are to groups that see the election as legitimate - one is us, the international community (we are the guys who thought this was a good idea in the first place, it makes the government legitimate). The other guys who think it is legitimate are the guys who win. What they tend to say after they won is, right, we have won and we can do whatever we want and we will. What about the loosers? They tend to say, you cheated and we are worried, because we see that this government can do whatever they like and we see our friends, the international community, getting on a plane and flying away and so we will defend ourselves in the one way we know works. That is why you tend to get into another conflict after an election. Now, we are the friends, we are the peace keepers in this and what do we tend to do? Unfortunately we use this post conflict election as the milestone to withdraw. In case you think I am exaggerating, let us look at the Democratic Republic of Congo. Here we had a big peace keeping force and we insisted on democracy and we insisted on an election. The date of the second round of the elections was October the 29 th and the date for withdrawal was October the 30th. That was so crazy that pretty late in the day we had to discover that we had to send more troops in instead of flying them all home. That approach does not work. If we are going to have democracy and we have to have elections then we need our international peace keeping forces there for a long time. In my analysis there is a package that sort of works. I think of it as „politics plus‟. I can show that international peace keeping forces are effective in bringing the risks down. For the first time I managed to pull out the United Nations data on its peace keeping missions and I put them into this analysis and peace keeping works, it is actually effective. But unfortunately the risks in the post conflict period do not fall very rapidly at all, they fall decade by decade. Time does heal, but is a very slow process. Within that first post conflict decade there is no statistically significant reduction in risk over time. So we need these peace keeping troops for at least a decade. When can we ever pull them out? What is the exit strategy? The exit strategy is not political design, the exit strategy is economic development. Economic growth significantly and substantially brings post conflict risks down, both in the year in which the growth occurs and cumulatively because it is raising income. The higher is the level of income, the safer is the society. The problem with economic growth is that it takes a long time! It is going to take a decade before growth at 10% cumulates to something that is significantly enough to bring risks down in low income places. Here is a complementary package: the economic development needs the external peace keeping and the external peace keeping needs the economical development. Peace keeping needs economical development because without it there is no credible exit strategy. But economical development needs the peace keepers beacuse without them the risk of going back to conflict is so high that you won‟t get any investment and if you don‟t get any investment you won‟t get the economic recovery. So external peace keeping and economic development are complementary. How do we get the economic development? It is a mixture of what we can do and what governments can do. What we can do is big aid packages post conflict, they do work, they need to be sustained much longer than we sustained them in the past, they need to be sustained through that decade, not just the first couple of years, which is technically what we have been doing. And there needs to be a very vigorous economic reform. Because typically post conflict countries come out of conflict with terrible economic policies. There is a very simple reason: during a civil war governments are just snatching at whatever resources they can find with very short term economic policies, never mind the disastrous consequences in the future, we are fighting a war, it is desperate - we do what we need to do to win that war. So the inherited economic policies are terrible and need to be reformed rapidly, otherwise you don‟t get that rapid growth. If you get economic reform quickly anough, you can get very fast growth. Mozambique managed to sustain 10% growth a year for a decade. But typically, we are so focused on political design, everybody is so focused on it in the first years, that economic policies go to the back burner. Nobody pays any atention. So that is the democracy and conflict story. Let me turn to the democracy and economic development story. Supose that we are maninging to keep the peace, is democracy going to be helpful in promoting economic development? I am going to have 3 points here. The first is does democracy help the process of policy reform from inicially very poor policies and governance? There are windows of oportunities for policy and political reform. All of these reform policies have basically to happen within the country: they cannot be externally imposed by donors, that does not work. We tried that with policy conditionality for 20 years but it is just a failure. In all these societies with very poor policies in governance there are reformers and periodically these reformers come to power. There is a change of leader, there is a change of minister, elites get weakened because economies collapsed catastrophically and so even corrupt elites become desperate and are willing to support a bit of reform. But does democracy itself speed up that process? Not as far as I can see. In fact, elections during these incipient procesess of reform acutally chill the reform process, they slow it down. I think there is one simple reason for that which is the very low income and very low education environments. Elections tend to be overtaken by populist agendas. Populism is going to technically win out over more sophisticated strategies. Not always, but there is that very considerable danger that populism would be triumphant in environments of very low income and very low levels of education. Basically most of these societies do not have an informed media and don‟t have educated citizens. They don‟t even have very educated elites, because from the 1990‟s onwards the donor agenda on education has been focused on primary education and neglected terciary education. So the terciary education systems in these countries, universities, are falling apart. Elites, educated elites, have acutally withered in these societies. There are in many ways tinier than they were. And yet a critical mass of well educated people is necessary in my view for the society to undertake serious reform. It can not be done externally but is has to be done through internal debate, critiquing what is going wrong in the society. If you think about it, China and India had policies that were every bit as bad as anything you could find in Africa then. The difference is that India and China were able to turn themselves around much faster than Africa. The difference here is scale. India and China have big educated societies. If you have enough educated people you can sustain an informed media, you can have, for example a financially literate press. A newspaper that has a circulation. In Africa, other than South Africa, you won‟t find any financially literate press. When I was in Angola there was not a single newspaper, never mind a financially literate one. If you go to the Central African Republic you can put all the people who know how to read a financial newspaper under one roof. There is just no market for such a newspaper in these societies. These societies are tiny. In that context, democracy is very prone to a populist agenda. That is in the case of reform in low income countries. Now, let me focus on not only low income countries but on resource-rich countries. Resource rich countries are at the moment very important for the low income societies. Two related procesess have slammed up resource revenues: one is very high prices, the other is the US and Chinese agenda of diversifying away from the Middle East into Africa and Central Asia. So both through new discoveries and high prices a lot of these societies are now resource rich: low income, small, low education, but big resource rents flowing into the government. Historically those resource rents we have used very badly. If we go back to the last big wave of resource rents in the 1970‟s there were missed opportunities. I have looked statistically at the effect of all the resource rents on growth over the last 45 years and globaly there is a pattern. The pattern is this: If prices go up, for say, oil exports, for the 1 st five years growth goes up, but if you come 20 years later the society is poorer than it was before the whole thing started. I have simulated what the present resource booms will do for Africa if it just repeats the history of the last 45 years. At its peak Africa‟s growth will be 10% up and after 25 years it will be 25% down. So it is vital that we don‟t repeat history. The question is then will democracy be the change which enables us not to repeat history. In the 1970‟s Africa was not democratic, now it is much more democratic, is that going to make things better? Unfortunately, there is evidence globally that democracy uniquely in resource rich countries makes things worse. I can promiss you that this lecture will get more cheerful because this is as bad as it gets. So, the global evidence is that outside resource rich countries democracy actually accelerates growth but in resource rich countries it reduces growth. Something about resource richness contaminates democracy. If this would be the end of the story, it would be too depressing to give it. You need to distinguish between two kinds of democracy. In a mature democracy, like the Netherlands, of course you are very aware that democracy means one thing, which is electoral competition, you are about to have one. But democracy is not just that. Somebody will win in a couple of days, but what happens then? Then the other aspect of democracy kicks in. Elections just determine how governments acquire power, but then there are a whole load of aspects about democracy which determine and constrain and limit how governments use power. They are called checks and balances. A mature democracy has loads of checks and balances. A free press, scrutiny by parliament, the courts, due process, masses and masses of checks and balances. So govenment performance does not just depend on the electoral contest. It depends on these other aspects of democracy: the checks and balances. Now we can measure checks and balances. So we can now decompose democracy into 2 components: electoral competition and checks and balances. Some societies have a lot of electoral competition but no checks and balances. Others have lots of checks and balances but only modest electoral competition. So let‟s see whether that matters for this unfortunate effect of democracy on resource rents. The answer is it does. Uniquely in the resource rich societies electoral competition is severally disfunctional whereas checks and balances are extremely useful. If a society has enough checks and balances it can make a democracy work very well, harnessing those resource rents for growth. If it has no checks and balances at all and intense electoral competition this analysis predicts that the society is in deep trouble. Why is that? So far we have talked about the dangers of societies turning into populism as a result of low education. The other danger that democracy can walk into is patronage politics. Imagine there where 2 political parties in a resource rich country, The Netherlands minus checks and balances. One political party is honest and the other is not. Let us not play this in The Netherlands, let us play it in Africa, that‟s more real. What does patronage politics look like on the ground in a low income African country or in a low income Asian country for that matter. It looks like the following: the political boss says: “ Hmm... there is a village there, how am I going to win the votes of that village? I could offer lots of public goods, I could say you are going to have a school, you are going to have a health clinic, in fact since I have been in power for 5 years, I could have actually done that, but I did not, because that is a very wasteful strategy. If I go for national public goods like health and education, it is wasteful because everybody benefits. I don‟t need that to win, I can get all the votes in this village because that guy, in the middle, he is actually the power in this village. He is the guy who basically tells everybody how to vote and they follow him. It will cost me $50.000 to put a school and a health clinic in this village, but I can buy his support for $5.00 I just give him the cash and he tells everybody, you vote for this guy, he‟s good” That is patronage politics. In most of these societies it‟s unfortunately more cost effective in attracting votes than the honest party strategy: health, education, good policy and the rest. You don‟t need to take my word for it. An ingenious political scientist from Benin managed to persuade political parties to run randomly in different campaigns in different parts of the country: patronage politics versus public goods politics. Patronage politics won! That is the bitter reality of democracy in these societies at the moment. If patronage politics is a winner why does it not happen everywhere? Why is it associated with resource rents? Why does democracy get undermined by resource rents? But democracy works ok without resource rents? Here I will give you my explanation. I cannot prove it is right, but I think it is right. When you have a lot of resource revenews coming into the government, the government does not need to tax. If it does not need to tax, it does not provoke citizens into very much anger and scrutiny about what it is up to. Scrutiny by ordinary citizens is the life blood that makes the reality of checks and balances. Checks and balances are not just a set of legal rules, they are people actively reinforcing them. Scrutiny is what‟s called a public good. Everybody benefits from it. The tragedy of public goods is that because everybody benefits from it it‟s in nobody particual interest to supply it. “If you benefit from it, why should I supply it?” “I will concentrate on the things that benefit me, you can do the things that benefit all of us” That is the problem with public goods. It is high taxation that provokes citizens to scrutinize the government. I have spoken to the economic advisor of the president of Nigeria a couple of weeks ago. Nigeria is a federal sistem with 36 states. He told me that he had been to the states to look at what state governors are up to and some of them are deliberately avoiding any taxation because they just do not want to provoke any scrutiny. They want a quiet life. And that is the on the ground reality of the relationship between big resource revenues, low taxes and low scrutiny. If you get no scrutiny, what can you do with these resourse revenues? Well, you can embezzle them, and what you do after is not just build palaces for yourself, - you finance patronage politics. If patronage politics is the electoral winning strategy because it‟s cost effective getting votes, the only way to stop it is to make it infeasible to embezzle public money, so that although parties would like to do patronage politics, they cannot finance it. What we need in resource-rich Africa is lots of checks and balances and what we get is intense electoral competition. Electoral competition is dead easy. You can even do it in Afghanistan and Iraq, why? Because it is not a public good. Private incentives to participate in an election are overwhelming, that‟s how you get to power! It is especially overwhelming if there are no checks and balances. The message is then: „democracy, yes, but...‟ There is evidence on democracy and economic development that is more hopeful in one sense. It is not a message of hope, it is a message of necessity, and that is: in ethnically diverse societies autocracy, dictatorship, is economically ruinous. Where you have ethnic diversity, unless you have democracy you are really in a mess. Ther is a very simple reason for that. Put yourselves in the position of a dictator who‟s got some power base in the society. The power base is military and the military is your ethnic group and you have to look after your ethnic group. That is how you stay in power, you look after your own. What I am going to do is change the size of your ethnic group relative to the whole society. As we increase diversity of the society your ethnic group in power is getting smaller and smaller and smaller. You now have 2 strategies that you can use to benefit your ethnic group: you can deliver national public goods like good policies, and health and education that benefits everybody. They will benefit your group-this is what you care about- but other people as well. Or you can adopt predatory policies that grab off the groups you don‟t care about and give to your group. In the process you will kill the economy because the grabbing is so damaging that it has costs. Now, when do you take the 1st strategy and when do you take the second? It depends upon how big your group is. If your group is say, 70% of the whole society, even if you don‟t care about the 30% there is not enough there to grab off them. You just have to deliver the public goods that are for the 70% of the people you care about. Unfortunately this will benefit the 30% of the people you don‟t care about, but never mind....it is the winning strategy for benefiting your group. Now, let‟s shrink your group to 10% of the society. Now the winning strategy is for you to grab and to hell with the consequences. Because you can predate on 90% of the population and that is going to make your 10% well off, no matter what happens to the whole. So in ethnically diverse societies it has to be democracy and as it happens the typical African country is much more ethnically diverse than anywhere else on earth. The typical African society actually does not have the choice, it‟s got to make democracy work. Unfortunately it does not make it any easier to make democracy work. All the things I have said so far are still right. Democracy is going to increase the risk of conflict, it is going to make reform processes slower, but there is no alternative to democracy because you turn to a dicator and you get Mobutu. So where does this leave us? I think democracy has been oversold, missold and undersold. Let me try to explain what I mean by that. It has been oversold: we used that image of the East European revolutions as a model for what would happen everywhere. Eastern Europe was most peculiar, it was the extreme end of the most likely democratization process to work. In Eastern Europe there had been democracies, they were European cultures, they were middel income, they had the prospect of the European Union membership if they abided by specific aspects of democracy, and if they could get into the European Union, then they would be saved from the menace of Russia. The incentives to get democracy right and the feasibility in those societies were overwhelming. Just because democracy could work in Eastern Europe does not mean it could work elsewhere, but that was part of the oversold image. If you don‟t believe me think about the big television image in Iraq on those first few days. It was of that statue of Saddam Hussein being pulled down and what was that echoing? It was the statue of Lenin coming down: Irak was supposed to be going to be Eastern Europe too. But it was not. And nor will low income Africa, unfortunately. So, oversold in this sense, oversold in a more disturbing sense I think. We really have pushed the sequence, first democratize then do the economic reform, and that might not work. It might be that by democratizing these low income societies while they still have very bad policies we kind of lock them into this trap with high risk of conflict, and very difficult to get any policy change. We might need the sequence that China is adopting. First do the economics and then the political reform will come down the line. Just to concretize that, ask yourselves this question, to which there is no obvious answer: in 30 years time, which of these countries will be more democratic: China or the Democratic Republic of the Congo? It is clear which is more democratic at the moment, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, they just had elections, remember? Which in 30 years time? We don‟t know, I don‟t know, just guess. My guess would be probably China. So it is oversold in the Eastern European image, is oversold in that sequence of politics, politics, politics, let the economic bagagge come later. We might even sometimes have to settle for less than democracy, maybe we should sometimes settle for stability. So it is oversold and it is misssold. It is missold because of the image that we push down the throats of developing countries, has been an image of elections. It is not what we mean by democracy in our society, we mean something much more than elections, we mean checks and balances, but the image we have presented and the money we have presented has been virtually entirely for elections. We have to rebalance that, because, as I said, elections are easy but checks and balances are really difficult because nobody is their friend – they are public goods. So we need to get behind an agenda of building the checks and balances in these societies. It is also being missold in that elections as being presented as the solution to the problem of violent conflict. When they are not, I think.The message there is not : „Don‟t hold the elections‟, but rather that we need some complementary policies that are effective in containing these risks of reversion to violence. The key strategy there is peace keeping. If we are going to have elections we better have those troops in there and not pulled out the day after the elections: as it turned out in the DRC instead of the troops being flown out on October the 30 th, more troops had to be flown in. As I said before, we have to reinforce those forces, not pull them out. So, it has been oversold, it has been missold but it has also been undersold. In these ethnically diverse societies like Africa and various other places I think there is no alternative to democracy. But unfortunately in Africa at the moment, I talk to a lot of African leaderships, they think there is an alternative. They think China is not only an economic model they think is is a political model. They think it justifies African autocracy. As sad as it might sound autocracy has worked pretty well in China. China is a much more homogeneus society in which the leadership has an ambition for the national good of China and that is just not true in Africa. African autocracies are going to be ethnically particular devisive and economically costly. We have to make democracy work and let me conclude with just two sentences, what does it mean in practice? It means avoiding the twin deformities into which democracy in these low income countries turns into. Remember, one of them is populism and the other is patronage. How can we help the heroic people who are struggeling in these societies against populism and patronage politics? In all of these societies there are heroes, truly courageous people. One of my friends in a major African government at a senior level has this year 21 death threats targeted against him and against his kids, so he moved his kids within the country. So he got letters saying “we know you moved your kids, we know where they are now.” So his kids and wife are living in a little flat in London. He is an asylum seeker! He is a big figure in his own country trying to implement reform and that is the bitter political reality of being a reformer in these societies, it is just very dangerous. We need to get behind these reformers and in the past we have not. How can we help? A defense against populism I think in the medium term is education and not just primary education but rebuilding Africa‟s terciary education system, rebuilding universities, rebuiliding its think tanks so there is an informed elite able to navegate their societies out of their present mess. So education and higher education and that costs money and they do not have money, we have. It is also a case, I think of technocracy, for example, over the last 30 years in Europe we have moved towards some decisions which we recognized are better taken by technocrats than by electors. That is why we have built independent central banks. It is why the European Union created something called a fiscal stability pact. Africa needs these sort of institutions to take some key decisions one step away from the populists. It needs more independent central banks, it needs fiscal stability. What they have tried in Nigeria is something called the fiscal responsibility bill. It is still a bill - it has not gone through yet. But it is something a bit analogous to the stability pact. They need these models. The Transparency initiative is an example. We can build models of governance so they can then follow. That is guarding against populism. There are also guards against patronage. Let me finish since my talk has been so uncontroversial, with a controversial point. How do we strenghten checks and balances in these societies? I have been a passionate critic of policy conditionality on the part of donors for a long time. I believe that policy conditionality has been deeply disfunctional because it has confused the lines of accountability. African governments must be accountable to their citizens not to donors. If donors start telling these governments the policies they should adopt, that just confuses who is really responsible for the policies that governments are implementing. But I draw a sharp distinction between policy conditionality and governance conditionality. I believe that it is right and proper that donor governments should actually insist on some conditions of governance. What these conditions would be is basically insisting that governments are accountable to their own citizens, not to ours, but to their own citizens. We should be part of that struggle to bring accountability. On that note I almost finished, but I forgot my advert. I have written -what I hope- will be a popular mass market book for ordinary citizens to read. It is called “The Bottom Bilion” and it is coming out in the spring. It is about all the things I have said and more, quite a bit more. It is short as well. Why did I write it? Anybody who has written a book will know that you don‟t write books to make money. I have written a book because of what has happened to development policy in reacent years, - it has been democratized. Minsters of development, in The Netherlands, in Britain, around the world now start to look over their shoulders to say “what is the implication of this for votes?” Now the votes they ask about are not the votes from Africa. They are not concerned about if this works in Africa, the votes they are concerned about are yours. Does this play well in the Netherlands? If you are badly informed, than the same sort of populist ideas that I am trying to get rid off in Africa will get dumped on Africa, because you think: “that is not a bad idea, we should tell them to do it” Our development ministers are now going to sing to whatever tune you like, that is the reality. So it is really important that The Netherlands, Britain and the other donor nations have informed societies. That is why I have come today. Thanks very much.
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