Unrecognized states are territories that have achieved de facto independence, yet have failed to gain international recognition as independent states. These territories constitute anomalies in the international system of sovereign states and often present significant challenges to policy makers, as evidenced by the war in Georgia and the continued debate over Kosovo’s independence.
This book draws on both theory and case studies to better understand the phenomenon of unrecognized states, demonstrating that the existence of such entities is less unusual than previously assumed. Moving away from an overt focus on case studies, the chapters present various themes that link the emergence, operations, and development of unrecognized states and assess how the established order of states responds to the challenges they present:
- How do unrecognized interact with the international system of sovereign states? How does it shape their emergence, operations and development?
- How do these entities develop in a context of non-recognition?
- Are we witnessing a new form of statehood, or are these entities better understood as states-in-waiting?
- What are the strategies available for dealing with unrecognized states? Could power-sharing or autonomy provide a solution or are more innovative strategies necessary?
With contributions from leading scholars in a number of fields, this book will appeal not only to students and scholars of Political Science, International Relations, Geography, Area Studies, Sociology, and Conflict Resolution, but also to journalists, government bodies and NGOs.