16 April 2004
ESI President Gerald Knaus speaks on state building in Bosnia and Kosovo at high level conference at Stanford University

ESI President Gerald Knaus participated in a high level conference at Stanford University. Organized by the university's "Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law", the "Conference on Governance and Sovereignty in Failed and Failing States" brought together renowned academics such as Larry Diamond, Thomas Risse, Robert Keohane and others to discuss one of the most pressing problems of our time:

Why do states fail and how can state-failure be prevented? What steps should the international community take? What did states do in the past and how can incentives for local actors be structured?

Gerald Knaus gave an assessment of the successes and failures of state building efforts in Bosnia and Kosovo. Tying in ESI's analysis of the "European Raj", he acknowledged the success the international community has achieved in Bosnia so far, namely preventing a backslide into violence and bloodshed and a slow but steady rebuilding of the country. He criticised the failure in building new institutions that facilitate economic growth, state administrative centralization, a lacking locals' stake in politics, and asked for conditions that would facilitate international withdrawal. Reiterating previous policy proposals, Mr. Knaus made a positive point for moving beyond the "rhetoric of permanent emergency" which is used to put off difficult questions of how to actually build lasting institutions.

About us
Photo credits
Alan Grant is an Irish photographer who travelled extensively in the Balkans and other countries and regions of the world. Thanks to him, ESI is able to show fascinating pictures of the Balkans: the facades of Tirana, the painted mosques of Travnik, the fabulous old houses of Plovdiv and the spectacular blue of water - dark in the Bay of Kotor, emerald in the river valleys of Bosnia, deep blue in Ohrid, twinkling in the Aegean Sea and on the Bosporus.

You can find out more about Alan Grant on his websites:
Jonathan Lewis lives between London and Istanbul. He moved to London and spent many years studying photography and now specialises in photojournalism, documentary photography and commercial work for a wide variety of private and commercial clients in the UK, Europe and Turkey. His work has appeared in a number of magazines and publications and is used on the ESI website as well.

You can find out more about Jonathan Lewis on his website www.jonathanlewisphoto.com