regionalization; comparative regionalism; regional organizations; identity; international relations
Pring Jamie (2021), Review of the book “Human Rights under the African Charter” by Allwell Uwazuruike, in Engel Ulf (ed.), Brill Academic Publishers, Leiden, 248-251.
PringJamie, AebyMichael (2021), The Buzz about Inclusion in Peace Research, Policy, and Practice in IGAD and SADC, in Engel Ulf, Herpolsheimer Jens, Gelot Linnea, Döring Katarina (ed.), Brill Academic Publishers, Leiden, 186-208.
PringJamie (2021), Review of the book, “Making and Breaking Peace in Sudan and South Sudan: The Comprehensive Peace Agreement and Beyond,” Sarah M. H. Nouwen, Laura M. James, and Sharath Srinivasan (eds), in Sudan Studies for Sudan and South Sudan
, (64), 92-95.
Pring Jamie (2021), Towards a More Integrated Approach? Cooperation Among the UN, AU, and IGAD in Mediation Support, in Wählisch Martin, Turner Catherine (ed.), Bristol University Press, Bristol, 261-283.
Pring Jamie, AebyMichael, The Institutionalisation of Mediation Support Structures in the AU, ECOWAS, IGAD, and SADC compared, in African Security
The last decade witnessed the proliferation of conflict prevention mechanisms among regional organizations (ROs), each having their distinct institutional design. Approaches in comparative regionalism have provided their take on why ROs form and their institutional designs vary. On one end of the spectrum, mainstream theories of regional integration and cooperation, dominated by the neoliberal paradigm, emphasize a functional approach, where regional structures are designed to address practical needs. On the other end of the spectrum, constructivist theories see regional design as a product of diffusion where regional and international norms, ideas, and policies interact to form regions with distinct institutional designs. While the latest research from these different approaches has gradually edged closer to the middle, each approach, by itself, remains insufficient to capture institutional variation fully, particularly in conflict prevention institutions. Linkages and relationships between these functional and diffusion approaches remain under-explored.This project’s main research question is, “What is the role of identity in shaping ROs’ conflict prevention institutions?” This research engages both functional and diffusion approaches to explain variation in regional conflict prevention institutional design by (1) synthesizing the current conceptual use of regional identity by both functional and diffusion approaches, and (2) applying the framework of securitization in examining the interaction between the two approaches in creating regional conflict prevention mechanisms. The project’s overarching goal is to examine the link between this two-sided conceptualization of regional identity and regional institutional design in conflict prevention. The research aims to unpack the conditions when functional notions of identity are relevant, where diffusion notions of identity are more at play, and possible relationships between the two. Within the framework of securitization, the research looks at the use of identity in the security discourses defining a threat and developing mechanisms to address the threat, particularly one meriting prevention. Using process-tracing, the first main task is to conduct case studies tracing the causal mechanism from regional identity to regional conflict prevention institutional design within each case. Using Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA), the second main task of the project is to compare these case studies, analyze relationships among them, and contribute in conceptualizing the interaction between functional and diffusion approaches that influence the variation in conflict prevention institutions across ROs. Through this analysis of this particular phenomenon, conflict prevention, the findings of this study aim to enrich the larger bridge-building efforts to integrate functional and diffusion approaches in explaining regional variation as a whole.