Decentralization and intrastate struggles : Chechnya, by Kristin M. Bakke

By Kristin M. Bakke

There isn't any one-size-fits-all decentralized repair to deeply divided and conflict-ridden states. one of many hotly debated coverage prescriptions for states dealing with self-determination calls for is a few type of decentralized governance - together with neighborhood autonomy preparations and federalism - which supplies minority teams a level of self-rule. but the tune checklist of present decentralized states means that those have commonly divergent ability to comprise conflicts inside their borders. via in-depth case experiences of Chechnya, Punjab, and Québec, in addition to a statistical cross-country research, this booklet argues that whereas coverage, financial, and political decentralization can, certainly, be peace-preserving from time to time, the results of those associations are conditioned by way of qualities of the societies they (are intended to) govern. Decentralization may also help protect peace in a single nation or in a single sector, however it can have simply the other impression in a rustic or quarter with various ethnic and fiscal features

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Not only do the elites in such regions have no sense of inclusion or incentives to cooperate with the center, but the central elites’ relationship to other regions may adversely affect the excluded majority/minority region, thus further contributing to troubled negotiations. Once center-region negotiations stall, one of the mechanisms that further makes violent conflict a likely outcome is a deepening of divisions within the self-determination movement. Few if any self-determination movements representing regional minority groups are unanimously supported by the population they (claim to) represent, and many movements consist of more than one faction or organization speaking in the name of the group (Cunningham 2014).

Indeed, there are two reasons why cultural policy autonomy, particularly policy autonomy over education, can have a conflict-provoking effect. Autonomy over education can be important to give regional minority groups a degree of control or, at least, influence over matters that are central to their identity, such as a say in the development of school curricula or choice of language of instruction. Yet to the degree that policy autonomy over education means that the regions carry the costs for education, such autonomy is potentially a high price to pay, especially for poorer regions.

In such settings, cultural policy autonomy may mitigate self-determination demands, while the lack thereof does the opposite. Note that the outcome here is not necessarily violent conflict but opposition based on conflict of interest, which can manifest itself in collective action short of violence. Thus, at the regional level of analysis, I hypothesize the following: H1a: Cultural policy autonomy is likely to contain self-determination conflict where the struggle is fought in the name of an ethnic minority group rather than a region and in regions where the majority of the population belongs to an ethnic group that is a minority in the state as a whole (ethnic majority/minority regions).

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