Territorial Power-Sharing involves the delegation of power to a regional or local level, where a minority group may be in a majority, so as to give them some form of self-governance. Our research the different forms territorial power-sharing can take, and the pros and cons for such a technique, in particular for women.
Different elements of all these forms of territorial subdivision are often combined in creative and multi-layered permutations.
Using territorial power-sharing to accommodate ethno-national groups is more likely to be part of a complex package of decentralizing powers to a variety of sub-state entities, sometimes building on earlier rhetorical commitments to federal principles, such as in Bosnia and Nepal.
Agreements with territorial power-sharing, by battle location
During negotiations on territorial power-sharing, there are critical decisions that have implications for inclusion, including:
Military power-sharing is often agreed as an alternative form of demobilisation, demilitarisation and reintegration (DDR) measures, or put in place as part of a wider attempt as security sector reform (SSR). DDR, SSR and forms of military power-sharing may all be part of a ‘security transition’, which is itself a political process.
Key issues which need decided in designing territorial power-sharing arrangements are:
How territory will be split
How power will be divided
How boundaries will be drawn
What this means for non-dominant minorities and women
Territorial power-sharing can enable inclusion of the main conflict parties, but should also consider how wider social groups will be affected.
Symbolic naming of the arrangements may be more difficult than deciding on the arrangements, and creativity may be required.
Sequencing territorial devolution of power in stages, to build incremental agreement, can help build support for territorial power-sharing as a framework for a more inclusive state.
Creative techniques for formalising ‘unsettlement’ may present opportunities to accommodate different national groups' within one state to statehood. This can include:
Providing for incremental decision-making on powers
Providing for ‘fuzzy borders’
Providing for new choices as to the territory in the future (through postponed referenda)