• Decentralisation and the Management of Ethnic Conflict: A Case Study of the Republic of Macedonia.

      Pugh, Michael C.; Lyon, Aisling (University of BradfordDepartment of Peace Studies, 2013-11-21)
      This thesis considers the extent to which decentralisation in the Republic of Macedonia between 2005 and 2012 has been effective in reducing ethnic inequalities that exacerbate social divisions and can lead to conflict. Guided by the concept of horizontal inequalities, it identifies the factors which influenced the decision to devolve responsibilities to the municipalities after 2001. It examines the particular institutional design that Macedonian decentralisation took, and demonstrates how its use of local power-sharing mechanisms was intended to address the concerns of the Albanian and Macedonian communities simultaneously. This thesis takes an integrative approach to studying the political, administrative, and fiscal dimensions of decentralisation¿s implementation, and considers whether the reform has indeed contributed to the reduction of inequalities between Macedonia¿s ethnic groups. Where decentralisation¿s potential has not been reached, obstacles to its successful implementation are identified. While decentralisation alone may be unable to address all of the grievances raised by the Albanian community prior to 2001, this thesis argues that the reform has the potential to address many of the horizontal inequalities that were responsible for raising inter-ethnic tensions during the 1990s. However, decentralisation in Macedonia between 2005 and 2012 has only been partial, and advances in the administrative and political aspects of the reform have been undermined by limited progress in its fiscal dimension. Attempts to solve self-determination conflicts through decentralisation will fail if local self-governance exists only in form but not in substance.