Inclusive Peace & Transition Initiative
Research Project - Inclusive Agreement Implementation

An abundant number of cases show that peace and transition processes regularly collapse in the implementation phase even if military and political elites strike an agreement. The frequent failure of elite deals has drawn researchers’ and policy-makers’ attention to the inclusion of a variety of societal and political actors in peace negotiations and political settlements. The continued implementation gap has also prompted renewed interest in the conditions for the successful implementation of peace agreements. However, the role of participation in complex implementation processes has so far received little scholarly attention.

Research objective 

The Inclusive Agreement Implementation Research Project investigates the following central questions:

  • Through which modalities can societal and political groups who do not exert coercive and veto power over a peace or political transition process participate in the implementation of agreements?
  • What enables or constrains the ability of these actors to impact the implementation process?
  • What implications do different types of participation have for the prospects of successful implementation, and how can the impact of inclusion be understood and conceptualized?


The exploratory study undertook a combination of overlapping and interdependent research steps, based on qualitative methods. First, it developed a comprehensive analytical framework, drawing on the research literature as well as a screening of 32 empirical case studies on inclusion in peace and transition processes. Second, the study applied a qualitative comparative approach to 12 country cases to investigate the effects of a set of features of implementation mechanisms on the ability of civil society and non-armed actors to participate in and influence implementation processes. Third, a concise case study on inclusion in the implementation phase of the Mindanao peace process in the Philippines investigated all the parameters entailed in the comprehensive analytical framework. Fourth, the analysed data and preliminary patterns identified were discussed at an expert workshop and contrasted with other research findings, leading to further data analysis and interpretation.


In November 2018, IPTI and the UNDP Oslo Governance Centre convened a workshop of scholars, policy-makers, and civil society activists to review the objectives, research plan, and findings. 

The final study provides policy-relevant empirical insights on effective implementation and the roles various actors play in effective implementation, as well as on the conditions that are necessary to enable the inclusive implementation of peace and political transition processes.

The issue brief summarizes the main findings of the project with a particular focus on the policy implications of the research results.

Download the issue brief and the full report – Implementing Peace Agreements: from inclusive processes to inclusive outcomes?