This project was commissioned and financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Netherlands through WOTRO Science for Global Development of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO-WOTRO). It was developed in collaboration with the Knowledge Platform Security & Rule of Law (KPSRL) as part of the Ministry’s agenda to invest in knowledge and to contribute to more evidence-based policymaking. Views expressed and information contained in this document are the responsibility of the author(s).

For their unceasing efforts to support the design and execution of our key informant interviews and focus group discussions, as well as their comments on the reports, we are especially grateful to our research partners:

the Malian non-governmental organisation GARDL, its coordinator Mohame Lamine M’Boderi, its field coordinators Babahmed Ag Atlaght and Fali Ag Arafaguey, and the field researchers Tita Ag Abacrène, Mahamadou Toure, Lamine Ag Mahamad, Aghali Ag Amoumine, Alwata Sidiki, Issouf Ag Sidalamine, Boubacar Salihou Dicko and Mohamed Ag Lilly

the Nigerien think tank Economie Politique & Gouvernance Autonome (EPGA), its director, Rahmane Idrissa, and its field researchers Boubacar Amadou (Tillabéri) and Moussa Mohamed (Tahoua)

the Libyan field researchers, who prefer to remain anonymous.

The authors would likewise wish to thank the staff of the various organisations that served as end users of this project and that made themselves available to discuss the research design and findings during various rounds of in-country workshops. In particular, we are grateful to: the Malian Association des Municipalités du Mali (AMM) and its executive director, Youssouf Diakité; the Malian office of the Netherlands Institute of Multiparty Democracy, specifically its director, Mirjam Tjassing, as well as country experts Mahamadou Cisse and Samba Maiga; and Moussa Diallo, justice expert of Checchi Consulting. In Niger, we would like to thank the Haute Autorité de la Consolidation de la Paix (HACP) and its president, Abou Tarka. In Libya, we are grateful for the support of, and dialogue with, the Libyan Supreme Social Tuareg Council.

With over 300 hundred key informant interviews and 30 focus group discussions, data coding and analysis proved a monumental task. We could not have written this study without the help of Mégane Bwaku, Chris Abinader, Antoine Robin and Béatrice Noun, who coded all the data in a timely and concise manner. A special thanks goes to Elena Ursu, Jalel Harchaoui, Kars de Bruijne and Feike Fliervoet who have invested time in providing comments and suggestions. Finally, we are especially grateful to all the respondents who made themselves available for an interview, participated in focus group discussions, and generally demonstrated a willingness to share insights on such a complex topic.