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Title: Insurgents, clans, and states : political legitimacy and resurgent conflict in Muslim Mindanao, Philippines
Author: Lara, Francisco
ISNI:       0000 0004 2718 7469
Awarding Body: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Current Institution: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Date of Award: 2011
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At the core of this thesis is a puzzle concerning processes of political and institutional change in Mindanao since the peace agreement in 1996: why did politico-military actors who enjoyed widespread legitimacy during decades of conflict fail to maintain legitimacy and sustain their political authority after gaining access to sub-national state power? The establishment of separatist insurgents in the "autonomous" government created in Muslim Mindanao failed to realise the promise of lasting peace or developmental progress. The problem in understanding what happened in Mindanao can be traced to prevailing notions of political legitimacy that are often bereft of political economy foundations. The thesis argues that explanations, which understand legitimacy purely in terms of democratic institutions, are inadequate because they ignore the local institutional foundations from which legitimacy evolves. Drawing upon 18 months of fieldwork in Mindanao, and using a combination of life histories, case studies, archival material and descriptive statistics, the thesis examines the multiple institutions that shaped political legitimacy, revealing how clan institutions trumped other institutional sources of legitimacy. Insurgents who surrendered their anns in exchange for formal authority could not compete with powerful clans who delivered basic security; relied on increasing amounts of internal revenue allotments (IRA) under a regime of devolution; and, enabled the spread of a shadow economy that boosted their incomes and allowed local citizens to secure their livelihoods with little taxation by the state. Political authority was achieved through a bargaining process where rulers transacted mutually beneficial arrangements with elite groups and embedded these within a larger social contract with citizens that addressed their demand for security and the basic conditions for economic survival. The insights from the case of Mindanao may be relevant to wider debates about the sources of political legitimacy and to understanding similar experiences of autonomous self-government in Southeast Asia.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available