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Title: The influence of research on state building policy with special reference to security sector reform : the case of Sierra Leone
Author: Varisco, Andrea Edoardo
ISNI:       0000 0004 5349 3179
Awarding Body: University of York
Current Institution: University of York
Date of Award: 2014
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Over the last few decades, international organisations and bilateral donors have progressively promoted externally-led state building and Security Sector Reform (SSR) as two of the principal policy approaches to enhance state legitimacy and promote stability and security in countries emerging from conflicts. At the same time, the state building and SSR research agendas have grown exponentially and the quest for evidence-based policies has increasingly become an important aspect for international and British decision-makers working in fragile, conflict-affected countries. Nonetheless, the use and uptake of state building and SSR-oriented research findings by those involved in policy-making has remained a largely under-studied field of research, and enquiry into the research-policy nexus has rarely approached the issues of state building and SSR. This PhD research seeks to compensate for this gap in the literature by investigating the extent to which research has influenced and interacted with SSR policies, programmes and activities implemented by the United Kingdom (UK) in conflict-affected Sierra Leone. The thesis uses concepts and notions from the literature on the policy process and research utilisation to explore the ways in which research has influenced UK-led SSR policy. It analyses the evolution of the network of policy-makers, street-level bureaucrats, and researchers working on SSR in Sierra Leone, and argues that two main variables – an increased stability in the country and a progressive evolution of SSR in policy and research – contributed to the expansion of the policy network over time and to a better use of research by street-level bureaucrats on the ground. The thesis tests the applicability of the literature on the research-policy nexus to the challenge of state building and SSR in conflict-affected environments, deriving from the Sierra Leone case study a series of recommendations to improve the use of research by international organisations and bilateral donors working in fragile states.
Supervisor: Barakat, Sultan ; White, Adam Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available