Having evolved with the welfare states in the United States and Europe public policy research often assumes stable political conditions and functioning institutional structures. As this precondition is questionable in states experiencing intensive conflict, traditional approaches to public policy seem ill-fitted for conflict contexts. Indeed, many countries and regions experiencing internal conflict are characterized by a contested state monopoly of force and by a limited ability to deliver central public services. In many cases, security can no longer be guaranteed, basic public services like education and health are deficient, and the legal system is inadequately functioning. In these situations, oftentimes “nongovernmental” actors like religious leaders, warlords, tribal-chiefs, civil society organizations or external actors like the international community and regional powers assume these tasks and responsibilities. Where the state is weak, domestic conflicts between various stakeholders may cause states to collapse, destabilize whole regions and cause widespread human suffering.