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In early 2008, the Carnegie Corporation of New York awarded Emory major funding to develop a comprehensive program regarding the global issue “States at Regional Risk.”

Emory’s "States at Regional Risk" (SARR) project brings together scholars, policy makers, practitioners, and students with the aim of increasing practical understanding concerning the reduction of state risk and the increase of effective public governance and services in five key world regions:

West Africa

Central-East Africa (Great Lakes Region)

Northern Andean countries of Latin America

Inner Asia (Mongolian Region)


A primary objective of SARR is to cultivate and expand networks of practical influence within these five regions. To this end, the project director has already initiated collaborations and held conferences in each of these world areas. Each forum has been developed in collaboration with local experts from scholarly, governmental, and civil-society sectors, and has brought together policy makers, practitioners, and academics (from the region and elsewhere) for discussions that emphasize pragmatic outcomes.

World map

Northern Andes Region
Venezuela, Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia
West Africa Region:
Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Côte d'Ivoire
Great Lakes Region, Africa:
D R Congo. Burundi. Rwanda, Uganda
Nepal, Bhutan, Northern India (Ladakh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh), Tibet (TAR), Amdo
Mongolian Region:
Mongolia, Buryatia, Inner Mongolia, Kalmykia

The underlying premise of SARR is that in each of these world regions under consideration, different dynamics shape the types and degrees of state fragility, the relation between weaker and stronger states, the impact of regional and international influence, and prospects for security and peace. Therefore, the project emphasizes place-based knowledge in relation to regional and comparative dynamics, and foregrounds critical questions such as “How do international interventions and national responses ameliorate or reinforce state fragility?”

Project Director:

Bruce Knauft
Executive Director of ICIS and Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of Anthropology