Rebellion, Elections and the Pandemic in the Central African Republic: COVID-19 and its Impact on Deep-seated Patterns of Governance

  • The COVID-19 pandemic reaches the Central African Republic (CAR) just when citizens were passing milestones for ending the country's conflicts through a peace agreement and national elections. A new rebellion broke out in late 2020 that hindered medical access to some of the most impoverished areas. An interplay of rebellion, elections and containing the pandemic have become the critical triangle deciding whether CAR can overcome its deep-seated patterns of governance that are stifling political and economic progress.
    DFG, 2021-2022


    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow


    In how far has the COVID-19 pandemic deepened or ruptured CAR’s governance patterns?

    Beitrag zu internationaler Forschung

    It lies in the nature of the deep-seated patterns of governance – outsourced politics, a plurality of violence and peripheral neglect – that research on the CAR even more than in other countries depends on gaining insights from beyond the capital. We will thus use the security arena concept to study changing current patterns of governance on the local level. The security arena is foremost a conceptual tool for comparison, keeping assumptions to a minimum, while drawing on only a few dimensions for meaningful comparison. The security arena is broadly reduced to two relational dimensions – actors and their interactions – around a spatial dimension and thereby grants common lines for comparison across contexts.

    Forschungsdesign und Methoden

    To study changing patterns of governance during the pandemic on a national level we conduct telephone interviews with key stakeholders from government, the UN mission, NGOs, and civil society. On a local level we use our well-established networks to collect data remotely (and if the pandemic permits, in person) in two peripheral localities and the capital.

    Small Wars and Insurgencies | 11.2022

    Rebel Governance or Governance in Rebel Territory? Extraction and Services in Ndélé, Central African Republic

    Rebel governance assumes a symbiotic relationship between coercion and public goods provision. However, in the rebel-held town of Ndélé, Central African Republic, we find that governance happens in rebel-held territory, but rarely by rebels.

    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow

    Anne-Clémence Le Noan

    Peacebuilding | 05.2022

    Cross-Case Patterns of Security Production in Hybrid Political Orders: their Shapes, Ordering Practices, and Paradoxical Outcomes

    Studying 12 cases across the Central African Republic, Haiti, Somaliland, and South Sudan, I investigate (1) where hybrid interactions take place, (2) how they happen and (3) what this means for people’s security.

    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow

    Monografie | Cambridge University Press | 2020

    The Security Arena in Africa: Local Order-Making in the Central African Republic, Somaliland, and South Sudan

    Die Bezeichnungen "staatliche Fragilität" und "Bürgerkrieg" suggerieren, dass die Sicherheit in mehreren afrikanischen Ländern zusammengebrochen ist. Wie Tim Glawion jedoch beobachtet, erleben die Menschen in einigen Teilen der von Konflikten betroffenen Länder zwar Unsicherheit, in anderen Gebieten leben sie jedoch in relativer Sicherheit.

    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow

    Berater:in | 21.03.2022

    The Most Under-Reported Humanitarian Crises in 2021 | Vol. 3 Central African Republic

    Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung für die Freiheit Potsdam: 21.03.2022

    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow

    Berater:in | 18.05.2021

    Suffering in Silence? Volume 2 – Central African Republic

    Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung für die Freiheit Potsdam: 18.05.2021

    This event is the second in a ten-part series, which will shine a light on the "ten most under-reported humanitarian crises in 2020". In cooperation with CARE Germany e.V., the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom invites you to reflect on the current crisis in the Central African Republic, truly “the world’s forgotten crisis”.

    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow

    Berater:in | 06.09.2021

    Erfolgsbedingungen für Staatsaufbau am Beispiel der Zentralafrikanischen Republik und Somaliland

    Institut für Friedensforschung und Sicherheitspolitik Hamburg: 06.09.2021

    Dr. Tim Glawion

    Research Fellow


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