A Minefield of Possibilities: The Viability of Liberal Peace in Somaliland, with particular reference to Mine Action.

Sarah Njeri

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis


    The dominant liberal peacebuilding critiques tends to focus on ‘states’ and the failure of interventions in rebuilding them. Consequently, a standardised critique has emerged largely because the critics apply a broad brush across a diverse range of contexts, programmes, issues and activities as illustrated by the lack of scrutiny on mine action and emerging contexts such as Somaliland. The liberal peacebuilding critics critique the standardised ‘one size fits all approach’ employed by interveners, yet they take the same approach. I therefore argue for the need to broaden the critique to include other elements and contexts of peacebuilding. I demonstrate that as an intervention mine action has intrinsic peacebuilding potential. However, the way mine action is implemented both globally and in Somaliland reflects the same dominant characteristics of the liberal peacebuilding critique i.e.; it is externally led; uses technical and standardised formulaic approaches; disregards local context thus failing to secure local ownership. Attributes that the critics argue have led to the failure and/or limited success of peacebuilding interventions. I therefore contend with the critics and demonstrate how these attributes have contributed to the challenges of implementing mine action activities thereby limiting mine actions ‘peace-ability’ potential in Somaliland. However, beyond the implementation modalities there are other factors that further contribute to limiting this potential; these include the Sector Actors; the Somaliland context i.e. the historical and political context, and the perception of Somaliland people. Thus in conclusion I argue for a nuanced critique that acknowledges the challenging realities of implementing programmes in challenging post conflict environments.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Bradford
    • Pankhurst, Donna, Supervisor, External person
    Award date14 Jul 2015
    Publication statusUnpublished - 11 Apr 2016


    • Somaliland
    • Liberal Peace
    • Mine Action
    • Peacebuilding
    • Mine Action Sector
    • Mines/UXOs
    • Horn of Africa


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