Over the past two decades there have been significant shifts in international economic dynamics and a gradual restructuring of global political relationships and collaborations. Emerging powers such as China, India, Brazil, and Arab Gulf states have become much more important investors and diplomatic and trading partners for countries affected by fragility, violence, and conflict. They are also playing a much more prominent role in international peacekeeping and in providing development and humanitarian assistance to countries in the Global South. Despite the recent slowdown of economic growth in China, Russia, and South Africa, the political and economic crisis in Brazil, and the July 2016 attempted coup in Turkey, there is little reason to expect that this trend will not continue over the long term.
The growing importance of these emerging donors raises a number of questions: What are the reasons for their expanding involvement in conflict-affected states and in supporting post-conflict reconstruction? What are the policies they pursue in these contexts? How does their assistance differ from or resemble that offered by traditional donors, such as the United States, United Kingdom, or the European Union? Do emerging and traditional donors collaborate and coordinate their assistance in these settings and if not, are there opportunities for deepening that collaboration? This series of policy briefs, Changing Landscape of Assistance to Conflict Affected States: Emerging and Traditional Donors and Opportunities for Collaboration will explore these questions. The series is part of a multiyear collaborative project, Emerging Powers in Post-Conflict and Transitional Settings: the New Politics of Reconstruction, directed by Agnieszka Paczynska (George Mason University/Stimson Center) and funded by the United States Institute of Peace. This first policy brief provides the conceptual framework for understanding the changing landscape of donor assistance to conflict-affected states. The authors of the other policy briefs are all practitioners who have worked in conflict-affected states.
Collectively they will explore how individual emerging donors, including China, South Africa, Brazil, and Turkey, have engaged with conflict-affected states and consider possible areas of collaboration between traditional and emerging donors.