Fragile States

The balance of power between strong states was for decades the dominant issue in discussions of international security. But today, it is fragile states that are seen by many as posing potentially greater threats. Weak infrastructures, internal conflict, and lack of economic development provide fertile ground for trafficking, piracy, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, disease pandemics, regional tensions, and even genocide.

As a result, there is a growing movement in the international community to find comprehensive ways to promote stronger states, as well as more effective solutions to deal with those that are already on the brink of failure.

In Fragile States, you'll find reporting from around the world—from East Timor to Haiti, from Guinea Bissau to Afghanistan. The reporting demonstrates the dangers weak states pose—and also the international interventions that appear to be making a difference.

Fragile States was produced by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting in partnership with The Bureau for International Reporting. Support provided by the Stanley Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York.

Fragile States

January 23, 2017

On Rebuilding the Middle East

Jon Sawyer

Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley will tour high schools and universities with the Pulitzer Center's Executive Director Jon Sawyer starting in February 2017.

January 19, 2017

Afghan Peace Talks

May Jeong

The task of making peace in Afghanistan seem to have fallen on the shoulders of unlikely men. This is the story of their efforts to end the war in Afghanistan.

October 05, 2016

Iraq: The Battle for Mosul

Jane Ferguson

At a critical time in Iraq’s history, Jane Ferguson examines the military forces involved in the battle for Mosul, the role of Iran-based militias and the status of Fallujah post-ISIS.

August 11, 2016

Fractured Lands

Scott Anderson, Ben Solomon, Paolo Pellegrin

The unraveling of the modern Middle East, from the Iraq War to the rise of ISIS and the global refugee crisis. A landmark collaboration with The New York Times Magazine .

July 12, 2016

Central African Republic: Conflict and Promise

Elliott Woods

With a population numbering just 5 million, Central African Republic is a microcosm of sub-Saharan Africa's most enduring political and humanitarian crises. It is also the site of one of the continent's most ambitious attempts at preserving biodiversity.

Warlords and Horsemen

In buzkashi, Afghanistan’s violent and ancient national pastime, riders battle for control of an animal corpse. It's still the best metaphor for the restive country's politics.

The Untold Quiet of Kurdistan

What the Vietnamese photographer Lam Duc-Hein first imagined of Iraq were tanks and violence, surges and refugees. But in Iraqi Kurdistan he found something different and beautiful.

Meet the Journalist: Dimiter Kenarov

Circumnavigating and sometimes crisscrossing the sea by ferry, visiting settlements and protected sites, Dimiter Kenarov draws a new environmental map of the Black Sea and its coastal area.

This Week: Stumbling Toward Nuclear War

This week: rising nuclear tensions through North Korea's eyes, refugees converting to Christianity, and how the exotic pet trade enables illegal wildlife practices in China.