Causes of Peace – The Botswana, Zambia and Malawi “Zone of Peace”

Project overview

Project Leader

Project Period

  • 2014 – ongoing

Other Project Participants

Project Description

Africa is the world’s most conflict-affected region with one third of all inter- and intra-state conflicts since 1946 taking place on the continent. Moreover, since the end of the Cold War Africa has experienced 75% of the world’s conflicts between non-state groups and 90% of all fatalities in violence against civilians ( This bleak picture is not all-embracing, however. Surrounded by seven neighbours plagued by conflicts, Botswana, Malawi and Zambia constitute a ‘Zone of Peace’ spared from violent conflict since they gained independence half a decade ago.

This project studies the causes of peace in Botswana, Malawi and Zambia. It is based on an understanding of peace as a function of case-specific factors as well as general risk-reducing conditions. It seeks to understand the forms of peace which has emerged in each of the countries and identifies factors at both the domestic, regional and international level. The findings from the project are relevant for understanding conflict prevention and the conditions underpinning durable peace.


Related Publications

  • Höglund, Kristine, and Mimmi Söderberg Kovacs, 2010. “Beyond the Absence of War: The Diversity of Peace in Post-Settlement Societies.” Review of International Studies 36(2): 367-90.
  • Opitz Christian, Hanne Fjelde, and Kristine Höglund, 2013. “Including Peace: The Influence of Electoral Management Bodies on Electoral Violence.Journal of Eastern African Studies (7)4: 713-731.
  • Brosché Johan, and Maria Nilsson, 2005. “Zambian Refugee Policy – Security, Repatriation and Local Integration” Minor Field Study No.24. Department of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University.

Main Financial Support

  • Vetenskapsrådet, U-FORSK (The Swedish Research Council), 2014-2018

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