The stabilization and reconstruction of failed states and war-torn societies has become one of the defining challenges of our era. International interventions have repeatedly been mounted in weak, disintegrating, and collapsed states that have become sources of regional disorder, transnational terror, and humanitarian calamity. Yet the process of nurturing stable, responsible governance has proven elusive. All too often, lofty and politically attractive goals have been proclaimed only to be rendered unattainable by unrealistic time frames, woefully inadequate resources, and constrained authorities. To bring strategic goals and resources into better balance, policymakers require an objective metrics system that will enable them to take stock of the magnitude of the challenges before intervening and to continuously track the progress of their efforts toward stabilization.
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