In this report from the Congressional Research Service, Kenneth Katzman examines the increasingly critical role that Kuwait will play in the U.S. ability to pursue its objectives in the Persian Gulf region.
This paper examines the evolution of the Zambian tax system with two aims. First, it identifies how patterns of taxation contribute to state capacity, and in particular state resilience.
The Congolese Elite and the Fragmented City: The Struggle for the Emergence of a Dominant Class in Kinshasa
This paper examines the current situation in the city of Kinshasa, including the position of the Congolese elite in the city and its relationship to the Congolese state. The author first looks at the history of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and how its class structure has formed before going on to consider the network of Congolese cities and their relation to the political economy of the country. Beginning with a brief overview of colonial history, the author considers to what extent Kinshasa is a city being made or taken over by an indigenous elite.
This paper looks at the challenges related to the transformation of a war economy into a “peace economy”, i.e. from a society where armed conflict has acquired central economic functions to a society where the economic incentives for war have receded to a level where the conflict is unlikely to resume.
This paper analyzes the political economy of the creeping militarization of U.S. foreign policy.
Benevolent autocrats are leaders in non-democratic polities who receive credit for high growth. This paper asks two questions: (1) do theory and evidence support the concept of “benevolent autocrats”? (2) Regardless of the answer to (1), why is the “benevolent autocrats” story so popular?
This article proposes a political economy of extraction framework that explains political order and state collapse as alternative outcomes in the face of lootable wealth. The article looks closely at the cases of Sierra Leone and Burma.
This paper looks at the causes of the shift in African armed conflict away from the prominence of insurgencies that are able to mobilize supporters around political programs in favor of more fragmented organizations in the service of their leaders’ quests for power and wealth.