The United Kingdom's stabilisation model and Afghanistan: The impact on humanitarian actors
‘Stabilisation’ has emerged as a powerful policy framework since 2004. The United Kingdom has been at the forefront of states adopting and developing a ‘stabilisation’ model and has adapted government policy, processes and structures in its efforts to deliver ‘stability’ in Afghanistan's Helmand Province and Iraq—as well as elsewhere, such as in Nepal and Sudan. The experience acquired in Helmand in particular is likely to shape both future UK approaches and those of other donor states. The paper argues that the UK's model has evolved significantly since 2006, from a reconstruction strategy towards one that is based on supporting host-nation governance arrangements. Consequently, this paper addresses three principal themes: the origins and conceptualisation of the stabilisation discourse (and its relationship with state-building and early recovery concepts); the role of the UK's experience in Helmand in shaping the British approach; and the impact of the stabilisation model on the humanitarian community.