Christian Long

Paul Collier: New Rules for Rebuilding a Broken Nation

In TED Talks on April 11, 2010 at 9:26 pm

Reflection by CALVIN G.

Original TED page w/ speaker bio, links, comments, etc:

Paul Collier:  New Rules for Rebuilding a Broken Nation

In this video, Paul Collier talks about post-conflict recovery.

He explains why modern recovery methods fail and offers his recovery methods. He claims that after conflict countries put the most emphasis on rebuilding the government. He says this is wrong because the nation is in a chaotic state and rebuilding the government and having elections causes the chaos to increase.

This has proven to be true in Iraq.

When the United States tried to set a political system in for Iraq and voting began the people became un- easy and a lot of violence ensued. Paul Collier believes that the post-conflict recovery methods in fact have to be reversed. He believes that rebuilding the political system should be the last thing on the agenda. I can see where he is coming from on this. Basically what I got from his methods are that these nations should save the big things for later and focus on the small things immediately following conflict.

The reason is that when the small things are taken care of the big things will be a lot easier to deal with. This proves to be true in almost all walks of life. Focus on the little things and the big ones will take care of themselves. This has proven to be true on a smaller political stage. When Rudy Giuliani was elected mayor of New York City in 1994 people asked him how he was going to deal with the crime problem that was going on in the city and his method was to really crack down on the minor crimes such as graffiti, jay-walking, and marijuana possession and in time the big crimes started decreasing drastically.

I agree with the message Paul Collier gives in this video and encourage everyone to watch.


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