Study Framing Document

Executive Summary This working paper makes a case for rethinking the social contract concept in the contemporary era, in countries affected by conflict and/or fragility. Inspired by policy efforts to rethink the concept as a means to better address the challenges of peacebuilding and statebuilding, the paper aims to theoretically ground the topic and offer a heuristic framing that supports the evolution of scholarship, policy and practice. It is laid out in the following sections: Introduction: This section sets the context, pointing to the deep challenges undermining the state from above, transnationally and below. It highlights limitations of policy efforts in areas of peacebuilding and statebuilding to address these and the scholarly critiques surrounding their strategic design and delivery –all of which suggest the need for greater focus on the social contract. Enduring themes of the social contract: Historical and contemporary theorising efforts are scanned and their limitations assessed, making a case for the concept’s rich applicability across


Bellagio Workshop and Report

Document and Event Summary Click above to download the full report. From February 26-March 3, 2017 the Project Working Group met in Bellagio, Italy, to reflect upon research progress and challenges, research methodology, areas of convergence and specificity within and across cases, and strategies to maximise scholarly and policy impact. The workshop commenced with a presentation and discussion on the framing of the study. This was followed by case study authors presenting their progress, and in some cases, early findings, and discussion around these. Project Director, Dr Erin McCandless, outlined the project framing, including the key questions and propositions driving the inquiry. The comparative findings aim to elucidate how the social contract manifests, adapts to, and is understood in different contexts. In 2016, the project became a proud recipient of a Bellagio Centre,