Improving Governance to Build Peace: Getting to the Nexus of Corruption and Conflict

June 7th, 2010

Search for Common Ground (SFCG) will be hosting a panel discussion on corruption and violence this Friday, June 11th. The event, which will take place at the Council on Foreign Relations, feature’s GFI friend Nuhu Ribado, among others.

Full details below:

Friday, June 11th
9:00 to 10:30am
Council on Foreign Relations
1777 F Street, NW
First Floor
Washington, DC

Corruption is a leading driver of conflict and the closest affiliated condition with instability and violence. Corruption incites conflict, fuels fighting, complicates peacebuilding, and obstructs nation-building. Yet anti-corruption and peacebuilding have historically been unaligned fields and the relationship between them has been distant at best, adversarial at worst. This forum, the first in a series to examine economics and conflict, will investigate the nexus between conflict and corruption. How and where can peacebuilders work with anti-corruption efforts? What are the benefits – and the barriers – to collaboration?

Register here


  • Nuhu Ribadu, Visiting Fellow, Center for Global Development; Former Head of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of Nigeria
  • Alix Boucher, Research Analyst, Henry L. Stimson Center
  • Stephen Ndegwa, Lead Public Sector Governance Specialist,The World Bank


  • Steve McDonald, Consulting Director, Project on Leadership and Building State capacity, Woodrow Wilson Center


  • Nuhu Ribadu is a visiting fellow at the Center for Global Development. His work at the Center, which began in April 2009, is to draw lessons from his experience combating corruption worldwide and to provide fresh thinking on the role of international institutions in this fight. Before joining CGD, Nuhu was head of Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from 2003 to 2007. He served on several economic and anti-corruption commissions and was a key member of Nigeria’s economic management team that drove wide-ranging public sector reforms. Nuhu was awarded with the World Bank’s Jit Gill Memorial Award for Outstanding Public Service in recognition of his efforts. Prior to leading the EFCC, Nuhu spent 18 years in the Nigerian police force. A lawyer by training, he received his Bachelors and Masters in Law from Ahmadu Bello University in Nigeria. Nuhu is also a Senior Fellow at St. Anthony’s College at Oxford University in the UK
  • Alix J. Boucher is a Research Analyst with the Future of Peace Operations program at the Henry L. Stimson Center. Since joining the Center in 2006, she has tracked UN and regional peace operations. Her research focuses on strengthening the rule of law in post-conflict societies, security sector reform, improving the UN’s ability to monitor criminal networks, and combating corruption in postconflict states. Before joining the Stimson Center, Ms. Boucher taught French at the State Department’s Foreign Service Institute and researched stability and reconstruction operations for the National Defense University. Ms. Boucher holds a BA in International Relations from Mount Holyoke College and an MA in International Relations and International Economics from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).
  • Stephen Ndegwa is a Lead Public Sector Governance Specialist at the World Bank, Washington, DC. He is presently attached to the World Development Report 2011 on Conflict, Security and Development where his work includes oversight of analysis of corruption challenges in fragile and conflict-affected states. Prior to joining the Bank in 2002, he was an Associate Professor of Government at The College of William and Mary. Dr. Ndegwa is the author of The Two Faces of Civil Society (Kumarian Press, 1996) and editor of A Decade of Democracy in Africa (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 2001) as well as co-editor (with York Bradshaw) of The Uncertain Promise of Southern Africa (Indiana University Press, 2000), and most recently co-editor, with Ellen Lust (Yale) of a symposium on Societal Transformations and the Challenge of Governance in the Middle East (Middle East Law and Governance journal). Several of his other publications on African politics, development, democracy, electoral systems, civil society, citizenship, ethnic politics and constitutionalism have appeared in journals such as American Political Science Review, African Studies Review, and Africa Today. He is also a recipient of over 20 national and local awards and grants for research, publications, and teaching.
  • Steve McDonald is the Consulting Director of the Program on Leadership and Building State Capacity at the Woodrow Wilson Center. McDonald has worked with both the National Endowment for Democracy and with the African-American Institute in implementing democratization activities. He has personally led missions of elections observers to Ethiopia, Benin, Gabon, Sierra Leone, and Madagascar. He has worked on assessment teams to design civic education, monitoring and training for elections officials for elections in South Africa and Uganda and has done assessments of human rights situation in Nigeria. He initiated and organized a series of regional conferences, with USAID, Department of Defense, World Bank and United Nations funding, on the role of the military in democratization in Africa. McDonald also oversaw the African Regional Electoral Assistance Fund which engaged in training of elections officials, civic voters education, observation and monitoring of elections throughout Africa, to include 34 separate country activities in partnership with the National Democratic Institute of International Affairs, the International Republican Institute, and the Carter Center at Emory University. McDonald holds an M.A. in African Politics from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London and a B.A. in French and Political Science from Southwest Missouri State University.

Written by Kelley Brescia

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