Accueil > Fragile states in a globalized world: the case of Libya


Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Spring 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English

Voir les plans de cours et bibliographies



Course Description

Fragile states are characterized by a fundamental failure to perform certain functions necessary to meet citizens' basic needs and expectations. Most are lower income countries, but some are also middle income countries. Institutions, poor leadership, economic conditions or the environment are amongst the roots of fragility. Why do fragile states persist in a globalized world in which finance, trade, information, knowledge and skills can generally flow with no barriers? What solutions can be found? The course aims to provide a framework to understand fragility based on country-specific contexts. It will address the following: I) Roots of fragility and the role and limits of international assistance; II) Security challenges and types of intervention in conflict-prone areas; III) Emerging solutions to fragility. Senior practitioners from the UN, World Bank, and key companies will be invited from time to time; they will discuss their professional experience with students, future prospects and career opportunities.


SERRE, Julien Y. (Senior Officer at the United Nations, MINUSMA)

Pedagogical format

Seminar. The course is practical and based on three working methods: a) It is case-based: students will look at real technical assistance operations; b) It builds on senior knowledge sharing: senior practitioners (World Bank/IMF, UN, Private Sector, NGOs, Embassies) can be invited to interact with students; c) It is collaborative: students often work in teams.

Course validation

Participation: 20% Group Assignment: 40% (1 Policy Brief and Class Presentation) Individual Assignment: 40%


Several Papers are required prior to the class and students should be ready to discuss them orally. All papers will be made available online on the dedicated course drive.

Required reading

  • Acemoglu, Daron and Robinson, James (2013). Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty.
  • Fukuyama, Francis (2014). Political Order and Political Decay. Farrar, Straus and Giroux (September 30, 2014)
  • Landes, David (1998). The Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Why Some Are So Rich and Some So Poor”

Plans de cours et bibliographies