2021 Peace, Security and Conflict Evaluation

Practicing Peacebuilding Principles: A Study of Sweden´s Engagement in Fragile and Conflict‐Affected States

Gary Milante, Jannie Lilja, Jups Kluyskens, Johanna Lindström

Sweden has long been at the forefront of promoting international principles for engagement in fragile and conflict-ridden countries. In this EBA study Sweden’s own application of the ‘New Deal’ agreement over the last decade is scrutinized. The authors are Gary Milante, Jannie Lilja, Jups Kluyskens and Johanna Lindström.

No less than 44 internationally agreed principles are grouped into the four areas that are specifically studied: Understanding the context in fragile countries; Coherence between different actors; Ownership and inclusion of partner country government and society; Changes in development cooperation. In general, Sweden, has performed well in these areas, and is even highly regarded as champion of the principles. However, Swedish practice has varied between different partner countries, with stronger application in e.g. Somalia and Liberia than in South Sudan.

In this report four recommendations are given:

  • Create a new ‘triple-nexus-plus’ policy with improved mechanisms for systematic coordination of Swedish actors.
  • Establish a peacebuilding focal function.
  • Ensure adequate embassy staffing in fragile and conflict-affected states.
  • Work to improve multilateral and regional coordination.

Gary Milante, PhD, Senior Researcher, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, SIPRI

Jannie Lilja, PhD Director of Studies, Peace & Development, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, SIPRI

Jups Kluyskens, Independent evaluator, Kluyskens Consulting

Johanna Lindström, Independent evaluator, FCG Sweden