Applying an Anthropological Perspective to Social Contracts in Albania

Authors: Schwandner-Sievers, S.

Publisher: The Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces


Albania presents a case study where citizen and state do not have an idealised institutional social contract relationship such as what is outlined in Western social contract theory. Rather, social norms based on mostly personal forms of interaction between citizens persist. In specific realms of society these are still expressed though the cultural custom of ‘besa’. For security and justice sector reform to take place, such interpersonal social contracts and their spaces need to be understood and not simply sidelined for a citizen-state relationship that is not present.

Source: Manual

Preferred by: Stephanie Schwandner-Sievers