An extended report on the research discussed in this article can be found in Vincent (2011).
A Village-Up View of Sierra Leone's Civil War and Reconstruction
Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
© 2013 The Author. IDS Bulletin © 2013 Institute of Development Studies
Special Issue: Piecing it Together: Post-conflict Security in an Africa of Networked, Multilevel Governance
Volume 44, Issue 1, pages 30–43, January 2013
How to Cite
Vincent, J. B. M. (2013), A Village-Up View of Sierra Leone's Civil War and Reconstruction. IDS Bulletin, 44: 30–43. doi: 10.1111/1759-5436.12005
- Issue published online: 8 JAN 2013
- Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
This article, based on the original report,1 offers a ‘bottom-up’ review of the post-war reconstruction of the Sierra Leone state. The impact of the civil war on human security and governance in the rural areas was devastating, yet rural communities remained intact. The pre-war (traditional) leadership structures continued informally to provide a degree of governance response. Despite the post-war restoration of chieftaincy and its general popularity, elected district councils have been reintroduced. Also, most communities are now using the alternative dispute mechanisms created by donors, who have played a significant role in Security Sector Reform (SSR), democratisation and decentralisation. Although the police are much improved as a consequence, it would be a mistake to say that they are wholly transformed. The various reforms are incomplete and the institutional boundaries of the newly reconstructed multilayered governance system are unclear. Not enough attention has been paid to how governance at the ‘periphery’ is to be conducted.