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Local Conflict and Development Projects in Indonesia: Part of the Problem or Part of a Solution?. Patrick Barron, World Bank Rachael Diprose, University of Oxford Michael Woolcock, World Bank Mixed Methods Course, Washington 4-5 February 2008.

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Local Conflict and Development Projects in Indonesia:Part of the Problem or Part of a Solution?

Patrick Barron, World Bank

Rachael Diprose, University of Oxford

Michael Woolcock, World Bank

Mixed Methods Course, Washington

4-5 February 2008

For more information: www.conflictanddevelopment.org

Email addresses: [email protected]@[email protected]


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Overview

  • Background

    • Context, motivations

    • KDP & Community Conflict Negotiation Study

      • Part I: Understanding local conflict trajectories

      • Part II: Assessing KDP’s impact on these trajectories

  • Definitions, Hypotheses, Methodology

  • Key Findings

    • Projects as ‘problem’ (i.e., as sources of conflict)

    • Projects as (part of a) ‘solution’?

  • Policy, Project Implications

  • Q&A


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Conflict and Change in Indonesia

  • Indonesia in transition since 1998

    • Political, Economic, Social

    • Accompanied by violence (large and small episodes)

    • Institutional vacuum for managing conflicts

  • Need to understand…

    • The nature and causes of violence

    • Possibilities for management or reduction of violence

  • Limitations of previous research and responses

    • Conflict literature in general: econometrics vs. ethnography

    • In Indonesia (and elsewhere), focus on high conflict areas

    • Policy responses largely top-down, technocratic


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KDP and Local Conflict

  • KDP: US$ 1 billion community development program

    • Across 28,000 villages—40% of the total—from 1998-2006

    • September 2006: Announced as full, nation-wide program

  • Mechanism: grants to sub-districts for villages to compete over

    • Small-scale infrastructure and economic activities

    • Built on local institutional structures; connects village to kecamatan

    • Mediated through forums and facilitators, to effect social change

  • Aims: poverty relief most immediately, but also democratization, empowerment of marginalized groups

    • ‘Democracy project disguised as development project’

  • Conflict links:

    • Sustained presence in high conflict areas (e.g., Aceh)

    • Preliminary evidence that it plays a role in conflict management

  • Interest from GoI to expand/modify program in conflict areas (e.g., into Aceh and Maluku via SPADA)

    • Especially so in the aftermath of tsunami, Aceh peace agreements


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KDP & Community Conflict Negotiation Study

  • Part I: Understanding local conflict trajectories

    • What factors affect local level capacity to manage conflict?

    • How do different types of interactions generate and/or resolve conflict?

    • What is the role of external actors in mediating local conflict?

      (Barron, Smith, and Woolcock, 2004)

  • Part II: Assessing KDP’s impact on those trajectories

    • Development projects: part of the problem, or solution?

    • Do community-based projects influence local capacity to manage conflict?

    • If so, how and under what conditions?

      (Barron, Diprose and Woolcock, 2006)


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Definitions

Definitions of key concepts

  • ‘Local’

    • Sub-district (kecamatan) level and below

  • ‘Conflict’

    • Disputes that become violent or non-violent

  • ‘Capacity’

    • Collective ability to manage/resolve disputes

  • Direct KDP effects

    • Via forums and/or facilitators

  • Indirect KDP effects

    • Via behavioral and/or normative shifts


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Hypotheses

  • Projects as ‘Problem’

    • All projects generate disputes (cf. Anderson 1999, Uvin 2000), especially those that overtly entail an element of competition

    • KDP generates fewer conflicts than other projects

    • Fewer of the conflicts KDP does generate become violent


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Hypotheses

  • Projects as ‘Problem’

    • All projects generate disputes (cf. Anderson 1999, Uvin 2000), especially those that overtly entail an element of competition

    • KDP generates fewer conflicts than other projects

    • Fewer of the conflicts KDP does generate become violent

  • Projects as (part of a) ‘Solution’

    • Direct effects: KDP forums and facilitators create spaces and procedures for both project and non-project dispute resolution

    • Indirect effects: KDP participation (a) improves inter-group relations, (b) enhances negotiation skills, (c) ‘empowers’ the marginalized, and (d) establishes new norms/precedents

    • Context effects: Positive impacts contingent on (a) program functionality and (b) ‘capacity’ of institutional environment



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Locations of study in Indonesia

East Java

NTT

  • Selection of two “lower level” conflict provinces

  • Selected for diversity across all demographic indicators


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Sampling Strategy

East Java

NTT

High Capacity

Ponorogo

Low Capacity

Pamekasan

High Capacity

Sikka

LLow Capacity

Manggarai

Sample

2 Provinces: diverse provinces

4 Districts: high/low capacity

16 Sub-districts: matched KDP/non-KDP

and extra for variation

40 Villages

KDP

Badegan

non-KDP

Sampung

Extra KDP: Jenangan

Extra KDP: Slahung


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Breadth

Summary of Methods

PODES,

GDS

Depth

Newspaper

Analysis

KI Survey

Case Studies


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Data Collection: Mixed Methods

  • Qualitative approaches (‘depth’)

    • Team (of 16 researchers) spent seven months in the field

    • Structured interviews: 800 individual, 100 FGDs

    • Informal interviews and participant observation

  • Initial analysis through case studies

    • Conflict pathways (68 cases)

    • Village conflict management capacity (40 cases)

    • Informed subsequent qualitative phases of research

  • Complementary quantitative approaches (‘breadth’)

    • Newspaper study of reported conflicts/violence

    • Key informant survey (N=268)

    • PODES and GDS (nationally representative)


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Assessing ‘impact’ of CDD projects

  • Enormously difficult—methodologically, logistically, politically and empirically—to formally identify ‘impact’

    • Multiple interacting components; non-uniform; highly discretionary and tailored to context idiosyncrasies; non-obvious (perhaps several, context-dependent) ‘functional form(s)’

  • Prototypical “complex” CDD project:

    • Open project menu: unconstrained content of intervention

    • Highly participatory: communities control resources and decision-making

    • Decentralized: local providers and communities given high degree of discretion in implementation

    • Emphasis on building capabilities and the capacity for collective action

    • Context-specific; project is (in principle) designed to respond to and reflect local cultural realities

  • Thus equally problematic to draw general ‘policy implications’, especially for other countries, contexts


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Using Mixed Methods to Make Causal Claims

Alternative Approaches to Understanding ‘Causality’

  • Econometrics: robustness tests on large N datasets; controlling for various contending factors

  • History: processes, conjunctures shaping single/rare events

  • Anthropology: deep knowledge of contexts

  • Exploring inductive approaches

    • cf. ER doctors, courtroom lawyers, solving jigsaws

      This study tries to integrate various types and ‘quality’ of evidence (qualitative and quantitative) to test particular hypotheses about the efficacy of KDP



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Key Findings from Part II

  • Projects as ‘Problem’

  • Development projects cause conflict, especially when they entail an element of competition, even when they ‘succeed’

    • Sources: (a) In-built; (b) Program malfunction; (c) Interaction

  • KDP…

    • Almost never generates instances of violent conflict (in our sample, only one minor case in three years)

    • Any given episode of KDP conflict less likely to escalate

    • Generates much fewer instances of conflict than other projects (36 cases of violent conflict associated with other government projects)

  • Why?

    • Presence of feedback mechanisms

    • Presence of facilitators and forums

    • Widespread participation


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Key Findings from Part II

  • Projects as (Part of a) ‘Solution’?

  • Evidence suggests indirect (group relations, behavioral, normative) rather than direct (forums, facilitators) positive impacts on conflict management capacity

  • Positive impacts of KDP strongest and most likely where

    • KDP itself is well implemented (not a given)

    • Direct effects strongest where ‘capacity’ is low

    • Indirect effects strongest where ‘capacity’ is high

  • Increased impacts over time

    • Endogenous: ‘learning by doing’, capacity building

    • Exogenous: broad-based institutional reform




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3. Why? How? generates

  • Responding to ‘problems of commission’ (e.g., corruption) and ‘problems of omission’ (negligence, inadequate socialization)

    • Feedback mechanisms

    • Facilitators

    • Participation

    • Socialization and monitoring



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4a. Direct effects of KDP generates

  • KDP per se does not reduce overall conflict

  • KDP forums, facilitators infrequently used to address non-KDP problems, though…

    • are usually successful when they do

    • but ad hoc (i.e., not institutionalized)

  • Especially so where…

    • other (legitimate) mechanisms exist

    • KDP facilitators are weak, risk-averse


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4b. Indirect effects of KDP generates

  • Positive indirect effects:

    • Improved inter-group (religion, class) relations

    • Increased participation in village meetings by marginalized groups (women, the poor, ethnic minorities), esp. in NTT

    • “… the women in Sana Daya experienced many problems. They usually stayed quiet at meetings, [but] now they’ve begun to propose things. Perhaps this can be interpreted as indicating that after KDP women have become bolder. For example, there was a women’s Koranic recital group reading Yasin [a book of the Koran]. Just one person regularly turned up. But after KDP arrived many of them began to come and offer something…”

      Female beneficiary, Sana Daya village, Pasean, Pamekasan

    • Increased monitoring and enforcement of accountability mechanisms on a broader village scale

      • Reduced potential for conflict in other decision-making realms

      • Stimulates demand for transparent decision-making

    • KDP a catalyst to social/political transformation in environments already conducive to change


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5. Summary of Context - Functionality Interactions, and Type of Impact

* While we noted higher rates of KDP-triggered conflict in high capacity areas, such conflict is much less likely to escalate and/or turn violent. Hence negative impacts are greater in low capacity areas, where program functionality is poor.


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6. Effects over time of Impact

  • Harder to discern, but in terms of participation by previously marginalized groups, impacts appear positive over time, at least within villages:

  • Over four years of KDP:

  • * East Java: From 41% (initially) to 75% (after four years) say ‘more groups come to meetings’

  • * NTT: 25% to 31% say ‘many more groups come’

  • Still some concern that neighboring villages that have yet to receive KDP feel ‘left out’; some evidence of rising tensions between KDP and non-KDP villages over time.

  • Positive pragmatic impacts: Aceh response, full national coverage…

  • …but success more ‘muted’ in replications in East Timor and Afghanistan



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7. Broader Policy Implications of Impact

  • Re-think ‘policy implications’ orthodoxy

    • Incentives and project design details clearly matter, but reducing conflict rarely a technocratic ‘fix’

    • CDD projects as part of, not substitute for, a coherent strategy for reducing local conflict, improving quality of governance

  • Ensure all development projects have accessible, effective dispute resolution mechanisms in place

    • Grievances likely, even (especially) in overtly successful projects

    • Importance of well-funded socialization and monitoring

    • Understand (potential, actual) flashpoints in project cycle

  • Provide spaces, resources, and incentives for negotiating difference

    • Conflicts often a product of confusing, contradictory rules

    • Include program staff, local leaders, state officials in dispute resolution

    • Innovative and legitimate enforcement mechanisms essential

    • Front-line intermediaries need full logistical support

  • Building capacity, accountability, and accessibility of government (at all levels) is the key long-term goal

    • ‘Supply’ (institutions) and ‘demand’ (citizen expectations) sides


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