Opposed Development: Concept and Implications

The hold and build phases of the ISAF offensive in Marjah and the impending effort in Kandahar underscore the salience of development activities undertaken in the presence of an armed opposition—“opposed development.” This conference explored the challenges inherent in opposed development.

June 16, 2010

The hold and build phases of the ISAF offensive in Marjah and the impending effort in Kandahar underscore the salience of development activities undertaken in the presence of an armed opposition—“opposed development.” This conference explored the challenges inherent in opposed development:

How is opposed development different from unopposed development? Is stabilization compatible with development or are there unavoidable tensions and contradictions? Are the types of projects different? Are the timeframes for accomplishing the projects different? Are the actors different?

If military forces participate in development, does that change the nature of the effort? Does provision of basic services by the military reduce violence or does military involvement in development activities put local lives at risk?

If military forces are necessary to provide security to the development process, what risks are associated with this?

Can the NGO experience with community-based development in combat environments inform opposed development planning and implementation?

Speakers

  • David Kilcullen
    Consultant on counterinsurgency
  • Andrew Wilder
    Research Director, Feinstein International Center; Associate Research Professor, Tufts University
  • Andrew Natsios
    Former Administrator of USAID
  • Nancy Lindborg
    President, Mercy Corps
  • James Schear
    Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Partnership Strategy and Stability Operations
  • William Taylor, Moderator
    Vice President, Center for Post-Conflict Peace and Stability Operations, USIP

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