PODCAST – Demography, Environment, and Civil StrifeOctober 30, 2007 By Sean PeoplesOur notion of security has evolved in the years since September 11th, with increasing attention being given to understanding the underlying causes of conflict and state failure. Colin Kahl, an assistant professor in Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a fellow at the Center for a New American Security, argues that these underlying causes of conflict can include—but are not limited to—demographic change, environmental degradation, and poverty.
Conflict is not sparked in a political or social vacuum, however; intervening variables such as political institutions and state capacity also influence the likelihood of violence. Kahl examines the interconnectedness of these pressures in the chapter he contributed to Too Poor for Peace? Global Poverty, Conflict, and Security in the 21st Century, which was published recently by The Brookings Institution. In the podcast below, he discusses the evolving concept of security and offers policy recommendations for building resilience to conflict in developing nations.
Click here for a summary of Kahl’s recent presentation at the Woodrow Wilson Center.