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The Consolidation of Democracy in Papua: Conflict Resolution and Policy Recommendations

The Consolidation of Democracy in Papua: Conflict Resolution and Policy Recommendations

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An essay for the 2012 Undergraduate Awards (International Programme) Competition by Vanessa Murphy. Originally submitted for Promoting Democracy in Developing Countries at Yale University, with lecturer Harry Blair in the category of International Relations & Politics
An essay for the 2012 Undergraduate Awards (International Programme) Competition by Vanessa Murphy. Originally submitted for Promoting Democracy in Developing Countries at Yale University, with lecturer Harry Blair in the category of International Relations & Politics

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Published by: Undergraduate Awards on Aug 31, 2012
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06/30/2014

 
The Consolidation of Democracy in Papua:
Conflict Resolution and Policy Recommendations
1
 
Abstract
 This paper seeks to analyze the democratization process currentlyproceeding in the Indonesian state of Papua, and then seeks to derive policyimplications for democracy aid providers from the analysis. In particular, thepolicy recommendations target the resolution of four festering difficultieshindering the process of democracy consolidation in Papua: incompletegovernment decentralization, thorny and often abusive military-civilianrelations, reluctance on the behalf of the Jakarta Executive to devolve politicalauthority, and the local population’s lack of faith in the local government (andcorresponding passionate separatism).In order to address its subject, this paper progresses in two sections. Thefirst section analyzes three democracy promotion initiatives currently workingin Papua: USAID’s Local Governance Support Program; USAID’s Civil SocietySupport Program and the diverse activities of the multitude of civil societyorganizations in the region; and the work of international human rightsorganizations attempting to highlight rights violations in Papua. The strengthsand weaknesses of these three initiatives are discussed. Using the Blair“advocacy scale,” included in the Appendix, to identify democracy blockagesin each of these three initiatives, this paper argues that the next “step” on theadvocacy scale that should be targeted is government “transparency” – themultitude of CSOs active in Papua have fulfilled the “participation” stages, butnow there must be a focus on generating the
 political
will necessary torespond to the mobilization, voice, and representation of CSO interests. Policyrecommendations for democracy aid providers follow from this conclusion. The second section of this paper then assesses how external aidproviders can better promote democracy in Papua, using the aid frameworkpopularized by Thomas Carothers to prescribe democratization policyimprovements focused on conflict resolution. Five prescriptive improvementsare suggested: the refinement of USAID’s Local Governance Support Programto establish more open lines of communication between civil servants,legislators, and NGO representatives; the broadening of the USAID CivilSociety Support Program such that it will envelop existing, sophisticated civilsociety organizations and engage them as fellow train
ers
rather than recipienttrain
ees
; legislative aid in order to bolster the anaemic Papuan legislature sothat it acquires the strength to voice its constituent interests to the central Jakarta government; military-civilian aid to redress the hurt, suspicion-filledrelationship between the military and Papuan civilians; and media aid to boostinvestigative journalism in the region and make use of international attentionto generate increased focus on the region, and thus increase pressure on Jakarta. In this way,
 political actors
can be increasingly induced to adopt the“transparency,” “empowerment” and “constituency benefit” steps of the Blairadvocacy scale.
(425 words)
2
 
Contents
Introduction……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………4Democracy Promotion Initiatives Currently in Place inPapua……………………………………………6Policy Implications for Democracy Aid in Papua………………………………………...…………………….12Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………….………………………………..20Bibliography…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..22Appendix……………………………………………………………………………………………………….………………233

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