Transport infrastructure is central to the growth and development of a country and a crucial element in improving the quality of life of citizens. Infrastructure acts as the mainstay of growth and social wellbeing – boosting employment, reducing the high costs of accessing markets, providing ways of accessing isolated communities, and ensuring the provision of basic services. It is equally at the heart of stabilisation missions in the quest to rebuild a coherent post-conflict state, particularly in its contribution to stabilisation through confidence-building in the post-conflict regime. State-building in post-conflict milieus usually start from a very low base after armed conflict, extreme loss of life and extensive devastation of public goods. Stabilisation thus constitutes, in part, the rehabilitation of transport infrastructure, which can contribute to poverty reduction, broad-based economic growth and inclusive social development. The construction of transport infrastructure can provide income and welfare opportunities for people over the short term, whilst from the longer-term perspective, communities may be encouraged to take ownership and maintenance. Ownership requires community participation as well as transparency. Yet equally, challenges to transport infrastructure and its usefulness in stabilisation projects remain – most notably whether or not roads facilitate or mitigate insecurity, or the activities of insurgents. Debates over these issues need further research and more evidence-based studies.
This report has been produced by Professor Ian Taylor for Evidence on Demand with the assistance of the UK Department for International Development (DFID) contracted through the Climate, Environment, Infrastructure and Livelihoods Professional Evidence and Applied Knowledge Services (CEIL PEAKS) programme, jointly managed by HTSPE Limited and IMC Worldwide Limited.
Taylor, I. Evidence of the contribution to stabilisation of transport infrastructure. Evidence on Demand, UK (2014) 27 pp. [DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12774/eod_hd.march2014.taylor]