On 7 July 2015, The Broker launched a new dossier that explores the connections between Africa’s conflicts. While conflicts are influenced by a diverse array of factors at local, national, regional and international levels, there is a need for policymakers to understand the way that conflicts extending across borders influence each other. But drawing conclusions about the linkages between cross-border conflicts should be a careful process that starts by bringing together experts from different disciplines and exploring patterns that shed light on the complex dynamics of the processes that fuel these conflicts.
This dossier is the result of a conference on the ‘Governance in Connections’ (or how the connections between zones of conflict are governed), held at the African Studies Centre (ASC) and organized in cooperation with the Leiden Institute of History, International Center for Counter-Terrorism (ICCT), Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication and The Broker. The conference participants shared papers based on fieldwork in Mali, Chad, Nigeria, South Sudan, Darfur, Somalia, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the Central African Republic (CAR).
The dossier contains two research articles: A joint overview article: “What are the connections between Africa's contemporary conflicts?” and an article exploring the Libyan conflict: “Libya’s conflict: A patchwork of local divisions and regional interests.”
The dossier also features a series of expert opinions written by the conference participants and several videos that illustrate how contemporary African conflicts are ‘connected’ through new ICTs. New expert opinions are lined up that will be published within several weeks. The European Conference on African Studies at the Sorbonne in Paris early July will also result in more contributions to this dossier. Please contact us with your comments, as we will continue to work on the growth of this dossier and in Sahel Watch as a whole. Please note that, due to a holiday break, it might take us a few weeks to respond.
Photo credit main picture: La traversée du Lac Tchad / United Nations Chad via Flickr