INAF-341 Addressing State Failure
Fall for 2015-2016
Professors McGowan and Mooney
This course will be co-taught by a State Department Foreign Service
Officer and an Army Foreign Area Officer.
Since the end of World War II, the United States has led numerous
efforts to reconstruct states and societies torn apart by violent
conflict. The record of these interventions is decidedly mixed. Yet the
diminishing strength of central governments vis-à-vis the persistence of
extreme poverty and the rise of heavily armed, aggressive subnational
organizations in many parts of the world has not only increased the
number of countries at risk of failure but also the human and
geopolitical costs associated with state failure.
This course will introduce students to the principal issues, actors and
challenges associated with contemporary “nation-building” exercises. We
will use case studies to examine the historical record as well as
contemporary, on-going efforts. Students will be exposed to the evolving
role of the United States and its relationship with partner nations, the
United Nations, non-governmental organizations and host governments.
With each case study, we will analyze the determinants of success or
failure and take note of the “lessons learned.”
Taught from a practitioner’s perspective, this course will closely
examine the inter-agency process for developing and implementing USG
policy, both in theory and in practice. Particular emphasis will be
given to the increasingly important role of civil-military relations in
stabilization and reconstruction efforts.
Other academic years
There is information about this course number in other academic years: