Timothy D. Sisk, a program officer with the Grant Program at the Institute, specializes in contemporary ethnic conflicts and the means for their management or resolution, with primary interests in Africa, South Asia, and the Middle East. He has organized a number of Institute events and authored reports on South Africa, Kashmir, and political Islam. The author of Democratization in South Africa: The Elusive Social Contract (Princeton University Press, 1995) and Power Sharing and International Mediation in Ethnic Conflicts (USIP Press and Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict, 1996), Sisk has also written a number of articles for scholarly journals on South Africa, ethnic conflict, and democracy. In 1991, he was a Fulbright scholar in South Africa, where he conducted field research on the negotiated transition from apartheid to majority rule. For the 1995 fall semester, he was a visiting fellow at the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo to conduct a comparative study of contemporary peace processes. Sisk holds a Ph.D. in political science from George Washington University.
Elections have emerged as one of the most important, and most contentious, features of political life on the African continent. In the first half of this decade, there were more than 20 national elections, serving largely as capstones of peace processes or transitions to democracies. The outcomes of these and more recent elections have been remarkably varied, and the relationship between elections and conflict management is widely debated throughout Africa and among international observers.
Elections can either help reduce tensions by reconstituting legitimate government, or they can exacerbate them by further polarizing highly conflictual societies. This timely volume examines the relationship between elections, especially electoral systems, and conflict management in Africa, while also serving as an important reference for other regions. The book brings together for the first time the latest thinking on the many different roles elections can play in democratization and conflict management.
Can power sharing prevent violent ethnic conflict? And if so, how can the international community best promote that outcome?
In this concise volume, Timothy Sisk defines power sharing as practices and institutions that result in broad-based governing coalitions generally inclusive of all major ethnic groups. He identifies the principal approaches to power sharing, including autonomy, federations, and proportional electoral systems.
In addition, Sisk highlights the problems with various power-sharing approaches and practices that have been raised by scholars and practitioners alike, and the instances where power-sharing experiments have succeeded and where they have failed. Finally, he offers some guidance to policymakers as they ponder power-sharing arrangements.
This volume explores the relationship between religion and politics generally, as well as the global wave of democratization in the late twentieth century, as background to different interpretations of political Islam. It analyzes the role of these movements in Iran, Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, the Persian Gulf (especially Saudi Arabia), and the Palestinian community.