Category Archives: J.J. Messner

There is No COVID-19 Here

BY J.J. MESSNER DE LATOUR As many countries continue to suffer thousands of deaths and millions experience social isolation and economic hardship due to the COVID-19 crisis, the 2020 Fragile States Index (FSI) will not provide any data or analysis of how the crisis is affecting the social, economic, and political fortunes of the 178 […]

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Exit from Brexit: U.K. Continues Rapid Fall

BY J.J. MESSNER DE LATOUR AND FIONA GRATHWOHL Brexit. In many ways, it would be easy to sum up the fortunes of the United Kingdom over the last five years with this one widely known portmanteau that has not only been the catchphrase for Britain’s exit from the European Union, but has also become a […]

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Fragile States Index 2020 – Annual Report

BY J.J. MESSNER DE LATOUR, NATE HAKEN, PATRICIA TAFT, MARCEL MAGLO, CHARLES FIERTZ, WENDY WILSON, SARAH COCKEY, FIONA GRATHWOHL, KEENAN IULIANO   The Fragile States Index, produced by The Fund for Peace, is a critical tool in highlighting not only the normal pressures that all states experience, but also in identifying when those pressures are pushing […]

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Ten Countries to Watch for in Fragile States Index 2020

BY J.J. MESSNER AND NATALIE FIERTZ After 15 years of producing the Fragile States Index (FSI), we are frequently asked about how predictive of a tool it really is. So, to what extent can the FSI signal emerging crisis, as opposed to merely diagnosing current conditions? Though prediction is inevitably bound by probability and uncertainty, […]

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Fragile States Index 2019 – Annual Report

BY J.J. MESSNER, NATE HAKEN, PATRICIA TAFT, IGNATIUS ONYEKWERE, HANNAH BLYTH, MARCEL MAGLO, DANIET MOGES, CHARLES FIERTZ, CHRISTINA MURPHY, WENDY WILSON, KEVIN OBIKE   The Fragile States Index, produced by The Fund for Peace, is a critical tool in highlighting not only the normal pressures that all states experience, but also in identifying when those pressures […]

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Always Look on the Bright Side

BY J.J. MESSNER According to the famed philosopher, Eric Idle, one should always look on the bright side of life. “If life seems jolly rotten,” Mr. Idle would have us know, “There’s something you’ve forgotten.”1 From the perspective of the Fragile States Index (FSI), when the constant stream of the 24-hour news cycle peddles continual […]

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Africa’s Islands of Stability

BY J.J. MESSNER “Mauritius was made first and then heaven … and heaven was copied after Mauritius.” So said Mark Twain in 1896 at a time when the small Indian Ocean island nation was under British rule (after having previously changed hands from the Portuguese, to the Dutch, and then to the French). At a time […]

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Fragile States Index 2018 – Annual Report

The Fragile States Index, produced by The Fund for Peace, is a critical tool in highlighting not only the normal pressures that all states experience, but also in identifying when those pressures are pushing a state towards the brink of failure. By highlighting pertinent issues in weak and failing states, The Fragile States Index—and the social science framework and software application upon which it is built—makes political risk assessment and early warning of conflict accessible to policy-makers and the public at large.

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A Nation Divided Against Itself: Internal Divisions Fuel U.S. Worsening

More than any previous year, the 2018 Fragile States Index (FSI) has demonstrated that rich and developed countries can be just as prone as any other to the effects of fragility and instability – and the United States is certainly no exception. A combination of political and social turmoil, coupled with severe natural disasters, gave cause for a deeply challenging year in the United States. All this despite a strong economy, underpinned by a robust stock market and record-low unemployment, demonstrating clearly that a country’s economic performance cannot be taken as a sole indicator of success.

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Fragile States Index 2018: Issues of Fragility Touch the World’s Richest and Most Developed Countries in 2018

BY J.J. MESSNER It certainly felt like a tumultuous year in 2017. As the wars in Syria and Yemen ratcheted up in intensity, Qatar was suddenly politically, economically and physically isolated from its neighbors, Catalonia moved forward on its attempts to separate from Spain, Venezuela fell further into chaos, the United Kingdom continued to struggle […]

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