DFID Understanding Afghanistan – Synthesis Report1
Sultan BarakatThis report provides a synthesis of more than 500 pages of scholarship generated in the course of the ‘Understanding Afghanistan’ research project commissioned by DFID Afghanistan. The entireundertaking includes a Political Economy Analysis led by Peter Middlebrook, a Strategic ConflictAssessment led by myself, Sultan Barakat, a Growth Diagnostic Scoping Study led by Alfie Ulloa andSharon Miller, and a Poverty, Gender and Social Exclusion Analysis led by Sippi Azarbaijani-Mogaddam. ‘Understanding Afghanistan’ draws upon insightful contributions not only from theseoutput leaders but also from the individual team members: Jonathan Goodhand, Chris Cramer, AnnaPatterson, Simon Foot, Antonio Giustozzi, Christopher Langton, Michael Murphy, Mark Sedra, ArneStrand, Emma Hooper, Deniz Kandiyoti, Andrew Pinney, Adam Pain, and Abi Masefield.Numerous informants, who are included in the appendices to the individual reports, allowed thestudy to gain timely and intriguing perspectives on conflict, history politics, economics, culture,reconstruction and social exclusion. The whole team is indebted, in particular, to the several seniorAfghan government figures, including more than half a dozen Ministers and a dozen members of the National Assembly, who took the time to speak with us.I would furthermore like to acknowledge the support and guidance provided by Chris Pycroft,Shalini Bahuguna, Lu Ecclestone, Alan Whaites, James Fennel, Miguel Laric, Rob Ower and numerousothers from DFID. This significant undertaking, which provides one of the very first opportunities todraw together expertise from numerous sectors pertaining to Afghanistan’s stabilisation anddevelopment, would not have been possible without their keen interest and commitment.We also would like to recognise the tremendous efforts of the ‘Understanding Afghanistan’ projectmanagement team, particularly Peter Middlebrook (Team Leader), Sharon Miller (ProjectCoordinator), Oliver Mathieson (Project Director) and Robbie Gregorowski (Project Manager), thelatter two from Maxwell Stamp PLC. Peer reviewers such as Astri Suhrke, and Dianna Wuagneux,Michaela Prokop and Deniz Kandivoti strengthened the content with their insightful critiques.Finally, I would like to note the role of the Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit (PRDU)at the University of York, particularly that of Research Fellow Steven A. Zyck, in supporting theproduction of this report. All errors and omissions remain the author’s exclusive responsibility.
Post-war Reconstruction and Development UnitAuthor, Synthesis Report & Output 2 Leader, Strategic Conflict Assessment