wp 201701

Exit Arusha? Pathways from Power-Sharing in Burundi. A manuscript outline

Stef Vandeginste

IOB working paper 2017.01

Preface: Exit Arusha, the book project.

This manuscript outline is the first step on a journey towards the publication of a book on the use - the rise and, more importantly, the fall - of power-sharing as an instrument of peace and democracy in Burundi. The outline summarizes the main arguments to be developed in each of the book chapters.

Research reaching out to its audience while it unfolds

The final outcome matters, of course. But so does the process. Writing a book usually is a lonesome undertaking and that also applies to Exit Arusha. At the same time, Exit Arusha seeks to become an increasingly participatory process. This manuscript outline, published as an IOB working paper, sets the tone. It is meant as a teaser and an invitation for the reader to contribute by challenging the author, by countering thoughts expressed in the chapter outlines, by signaling omissions or by feeding the analysis with documentary sources. Burundian readers are particularly welcome to contribute. Throughout this journey, draft chapters will be published – in whole or in part – as
IOB working papers. In their final version, they will be together make up Exit Arusha? Pathways from Power-Sharing in Burundi, to be published as a book.A webpage, part of the website Law, power and peace in Burundi (www.uantwerpen.be/burundi), is the virtual meeting place for those interested in the book project. Through its twitter account #exitarusha the book project reaches out to a wider audience interested in Burundi’s contemporary history and, more broadly, in institutional engineering of peace and democracy.

Slow science

This book project sets off without a timeline or deadline. It starts in January 2017 at a moment when (ethnic and political) power-sharing is under threat in Burundi. Thus, the object of analysis is, to some extent, developing while the book project takes shape, which makes it even harder to anticipate on the timing of its successful completion. The provisional title includes a question mark, which may no longer be the case by the end of the drafting process.All draft chapters are published in English and French. Translating slows down but, more importantly, questions the author, pushing him to think twice about how ideas are worded and arguments are built.

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