Corruption is a serious concern, one which can undermine state legitimacy, exacerbate inequality, and affect trust between social groups. Such effects are particularly problematic in societies that have gone through violent conflict, and are struggling to rebuild institutions, restore social trust, and recover ecomically. While anti-corruption measures are increasingly integrated into post-conflict programs, war-time structures and practices of corruption often prevail. This book explores corruption in post-war societies by focusing on the important issues of power, inequality and trust. To understand post-war power structures, and the extent to which they engrain, challenge, or transform corrupt practices, we need to study what kind of peace has emerged. The empirical cases in this book offer a variety of post-conflict situations, demonstrating how corruption is played out in, depending on the type and extent of international intervention, and in the case of a victor's peace, a contested peace, a partial peace etc. The chapters illustrate the experiences and perceptions of people on the ground in post-conflict societies, and by giving much space to local dynamics, the book shifts the focus from external intervention and actors to local contexts, striving for greater understanding of the interplay between corruption, power, inequality, and trust in post-war societies. This book was originally published as a special issue of Third World Quarterly.
Jonas Lindberg is Associate Professor in Human Geography at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. His key publications explore issues relating to education, development, and rural livelihoods, mainly with Sri Lanka as an empirical case. Beyond the focus on corruption in post-conflict societies, he is currently involved in a research project attempting to understand the politics of the 'new aid architecture', with an empirical focus on aid to the education sector in Rwanda. Camilla Orjuela is Associate Professor in the School of Global Studies at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Her research has focused on civil society and peace building, post-conflict reconstruction and reconciliation, diaspora politics, and corruption. She has extensive experience of research in Sri Lanka. She is the author of The Identity Politics of Peacebuilding: Civil Society in War-torn Sri Lanka (2008), and has also published articles in journals such as the Journal of Peace Research, Security Dialogue, Peacebuilding, Global Governance, and Critical Asian Studies.