Survey of the country’s history, the source of its problems, information about its people, economy, and culture, and its potential to succeed.

For your portfolio project, you will evaluate a fragile (formerly called failed) state and develop a plan to help it recover and get back on the right track. This will involve a survey of the country’s history, the source of its problems, information about its people, economy, and culture, and its potential to succeed if given a chance.

The Global Policy Forum website provides information on fragile/failed states in general, as well as specific states.

ForeignPolicy.com provides the 2014 list of most fragile/failed states. You may choose your country for this study from the countries in dark red on the map at the bottom of the opening page.

General information:

  • Population of the country (see 1 below for more information)
  • Important ethnic or racial groups and divisions
  • Per capita gross domestic product (see 2 below for more information)
  • UN Human Development Index rankings (see 2 below for more information)
  • Freedom House scores for political rights and civil liberties (see 3 below for more information)
  • The economic position of your country compared to other countries (wealthy, poor, middle income).

History:

  • Provide an overview of the country’s history, focusing on when and why it began to have problems leading to its fragile/failed status.

Classification and structure of government:

  • Although fragile/failed states lack an effective government, this does not mean that no one is trying to run the country or at least parts of the country. Who is trying to govern your chosen country? How are they attempting to do this?
  • Are there attempts to hold elections? If so, how are these elections conducted, and what is voter turnout (See 4 below for more information)? When was the most recent election held, and what were the results?

Competition, stability and civil society:

  • Do political parties exist? If so, what are they, and what role do they play in the country’s problems and/or efforts to provide structure?
  • Are there any recent political changes?
  • Major social movements?
  • Are their divisions or conflicts based on race/religion/culture, etc? Has genocide taken place?
  • Who provides basic services such as utilities, education, medical care, etc?
  • What is daily life like for the people?

Economic environment:

  • Major industries
  • Natural resources
  • Other sources of revenue
  • Reliance on foreign aid.

Other questions:

  • What are the most important political, economic, environmental and human rights issues facing your country?
  • Is your country in conflict with its neighbors or other countries?
  • What are its relations with major global powers ‑- the U.S., Europe, China, etc?

Conclude the paper with your assessment of the country’s future. What could be done to help the country become stable and develop an effective government? Include what the people can do to help themselves, as well as the role that other countries and humanitarian aid groups could play.

Required Resources:

  1. Data can be accessed through the World Bank website.
  2. Data can be found on the website of the UN Human Development Report
  3. Data available at Freedomhouse.org
  4. Data on election turnout available on the website of the Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance

Additional Requirements:

  • Write a formal eight to ten page essay complete with discussion and citation from at least ten credible academic sources other than required course readings to support your findings. The CSU-Global Library is an excellent place to search for scholarly sources.
  • In addition, provide a reference list, in alphabetical order by last name of author, in APA format, and include a title page at the beginning.

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