Bosnia and Herzegovina: The Favourite Experiment of the International Community?

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This thesis looks at the various effects a consociational system can have on a war-torn country such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, focusing primarily on whether the international community is right to propose consociationalism as the solution to a conflict involving different groups. These issues were investigated through qualitative methods of research in the form of a document analysis of relevant publications and articles by academics and semi-structured, indepth interviews with actors from Bosnian NGOs. The latter was chosen because NGOs are under-represented in the literature, while their views are enriching having experienced Bosnia’s reconstruction up close. From both methods various strengths, weaknesses, threats and solutions have emerged. By combining these results with an extensive review of the current scientific literature, this thesis concludes the following: although consociationalism successfully ended the Bosnian war by bringing peace and stability to Bosnia and Herzegovina, the country has moved into a negative hybrid peace situation. Consociationalism has brought a situation where the interests of elites and the status quo are maintained. This has hampered progress in Bosnia and Herzegovina for 26 years.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen