EU Donor Policies in Situations of Fragility: Promoting ‘Resilience’?

Jan Pospisil, Sophie Besancenot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In recent policy papers on developmental statebuilding, for example in the European Report on Development in 2009, the concept of ‘resilience’ has been introduced as an alternative to ‘fragility’ and ‘fragile states’. This concept even offers the possibility of forging a ‘common European approach’. Although a considerable number of donor agencies (and, in particular, the European Commission since 2012) have adopted the concept and are applying it in some of their guidelines and strategies, the state of implementation in concrete interventions is unclear at present. Taking the development cooperation of the European Union and its member states in South Sudan as an example, this article assesses the current status of resilience in statebuilding efforts to be ambivalent: although there is little explicit reference to the concept in current country strategies and concrete programming, some components of resilience inform interventions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)614–628
Number of pages15
JournalEuropean Journal of Development Research
Early online date9 Jan 2014
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes


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