Although the problem of “insolvency” of states is firmly established in modern scientific and political discourse, it can be said that theoretically it remains insufficiently developed. When analyzing the “insolvency” of a state, experts face the problem of a wide variety of its manifestations: the state can be recognized as “weak” in terms of its ability to control its territory, provide an acceptable standard of living for its citizens, develop and strengthen standards of social behavior, etc. As a result, up to now there is no consensus among researchers on which countries should be classified as “failed”.
Very wide remains the range of opinions regarding the “content” of this concept. For example, the Swiss researcher D. Türer proceeds from the fact that “insolvent states” are “a breakdown product of state structures that ensure law and order”. In his opinion, the overwhelming majority of “failed states” are entities with “aggressive, voluntaristic or totalitarian” regimes of power . And the employee of the Berlin Science and Politics Foundation, W. Schneckener, understands the term “failed” as a state that “has lost the ability to manage in the main areas of competence”, to which he proposes to include “a monopoly on the use of force, public services in various fields, mechanisms for the distribution of economic resources, public participation in politics and decision-making procedures, stability of political institutions ”. W. Schneckener identifies three types of states: “weak states” (weak states), “failing states” or “failing states”, and “failed states” proper. According to the expert, the latter type of states are characterized by “lack of ability to perform basic functions, which suggests that“ total collapse or collapse of statehood ”.
The lack of development of the very concept of a “failed state” was reflected in the nomination of a wide range of definitions for this phenomenon. “Fragile”, “collapsed”, “failed”, “experiencing decay”, “weak / critically weak / requiring observation”, “incapable”, “in decline,” “quasi-states”, “parastate”, “states “outcasts”, “bankrupt states” - authors' teams and individual experts offer their options for defining “insolvency”, justifying their arguments and criteria. Under these conditions, the term “failed state” has become the most widespread, translated in the national scientific and political vocabulary as “failed” or “failed” state .
A powerful impetus to the theoretical development of the problem of “insolvency” of states in recent years has made this kind of research relevant to the ruling circles of the West, primarily the United States, who tried to use the real and perceived threats generated by this phenomenon in their strategic interests. Under the administration of J. Bush Jr. and then B. Obama, states labeled "failed" were declared hotbeds of terrorism, a threat to the world community, and included among the priority problems of US national security. In the recent past, this served as a rationale for sending troops into Afghanistan in 2001 and in Iraq in 2003.
As a result, today in the West and first of all in the USA there is a “boom” of research on this topic, in which the theoretical study of the problem is increasingly giving way to the development of applied criteria for “insolvency” and compiling state ratings based on them. The American Brookings Institute (“index of sovereignty” and “index of state weakness of developing countries”), George Mason University (“index of fragility of states”), University of Maryland (“list of instability of the world and conflicts”) created their designs. Own ratings of “insolvent” countries were developed by a number of Western government agencies participating in international development programs and donor assistance: the United States Agency for International Development, the Commission on Weak States and National Interests of the United States Global Development Center, the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, Canadian International Development; World Bank .
Already the list of centers actively dealing with the problems of insolvency of states leads to certain reflections. And although most of them position themselves as “independent, non-partisan, non-profit research and educational institutions,” it is striking that many of them have close contacts with the US administration, and therefore it is quite natural to ask the question of the sources of financing research, their objectivity and impartiality. On the whole, it seems that the background of this process is to establish the monopoly right for American experts to “build” the modern picture of the world, to evaluate other states, to draw conclusions and conclusions on this basis.
One of the most developed among the western ratings of insolvency today is the project of the American Fund for Peace , which prepares annual reports on the state of the problem of insolvent countries in the world, which are widely spread.
Central to the methodology for assessing the socio-economic development of countries is a quantitative assessment of the degree of insolvency. It is expressed by the States Insolvency Index (Failed States Index - FSI), which is a system for assessing countries by the achieved level of political institutions development and the effectiveness of their social and economic policies.
The information and analytical base, on the basis of which FSI is calculated, is based on the analysis of a large array of documents and messages on various socio-economic and political aspects, taking into account a large number of factors and interrelations between them for each of the 178 states included in the rating. The FSI value for each country is calculated by summing up the values of twelve key indicators, which in turn are compiled based on more than 100 auxiliary indicators.
The indicators of the socio-economic group are designed to capture the nature and extent of the negative impact of problems related to environmental degradation, natural disasters and epidemics (No. 1), the presence of refugees and displaced persons (No. 2), deepening inequality and tension between social and religious groups (No. No. 3 and 4), by the growth of emigration and brain drain (No. 5) by the deterioration of the main economic indicators - a decrease in GDP, an increase in the economic deficit, the size of public debt, and inflation and unemployment and (№ 6).
The group of political and military indicators provides for the analysis of such phenomena as the degree of efficiency of public administration, the scale of corruption, the state of the “shadow economy” (No. 7), the degree of provision of citizens with the necessary level of services, primarily in the areas of health and education (No. 8), provision human rights and rule of law cases (No. 9), state of the security forces and law and order (No. 10), state of the political and electoral process (No. 11), interference by external forces (No. 12).
Each of the indicators takes a value from 0 to 10, with a higher value corresponding to the worst state in the evaluated area. The total FSI value ranges from 0 to 120.
As a result of the addition of indicators, the countries surveyed are ranked by the value of the FSI index by decreasing and are divided according to the degree of "insolvency" into 11 groups:
110 <FSI <120 - causing increased anxiety;
100 <FSI <110 - causing high degree of alarm;
90 <FSI <100 - causing a certain alarm;
80 <FSI <90 - causing increased alertness;
70 <FSI <80 - causing high alertness;