State and Peace-Building Fund (SPF): Our Niche and Where We Work

February 2, 2015


The SPF is designed to explore innovative approaches to peace- and state-building in a range of difficult fragile and conflict-affected environments. It finances strategic and catalytic development interventions and leverages partnerships that over the long-term promote resilient institutions that are able to manage the internal and external stresses that can increase the risk of conflict and violence.

The SPF’s niche

The particular niche of the SPF is its ability to secure funding where IDA cannot, in countries with limited IDA, and in special IBRD cases. 74 percent of SPF grants have been awarded for innovative programming in countries with limited or no access to other types of funding for fragility, conflict and violence (FCV) related activities, or for IBRD countries that would not borrow for conflict and crisis response. The SPF also supports innovative pilot activities that can be scaled up, informs FCV sensitive project design and captures and disseminates lessons on what works best in countries impacted by FCV.



SPF funding is available to all WBG member countries as well as countries in arrears and non-members- with limited or no access to other sources of Bank financing- on a case-by case basis. At present, the SPF responds to diverse FCV challenges in 34 countries, with the Africa region being the largest recipient of new SPF funding, followed by the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

The regional distribution of SPF grants is also geared towards support for projects in Africa and MENA: 

Africa: 46 % of SPF program activities are implemented in Africa and address multiple forms of FCV. These include three Africa-focused strategic initiatives, such as the Strategy Initiative for Somalia Re-engagement (SISR), which provides a foundation for the World Bank’s expanding support for Somalia’s transition process. See more information

MENA: 23 % of SPF supported projects are found in the Middle East and North Africa region and focus primarily on crises and political transitions. Substantial SPF funding has been directed toward support for local communities in Jordan and Lebanon to manage the human and economic impacts of the Syrian refugee crisis. 

East Asia and the Pacific: SPF programs in the East Asia and Pacific region predominantly address subnational conflict and small island state fragility. In FCV affected areas in Southern Thailand, the SPF supports innovative community based approaches to promote peace-building in a middle-income context. See more information

Latin America and Caribbean: Urban crime and violence are the SPF’s main areas of focus in Latin America. In April 2012, it launched the Central America Citizen Security Initiative, which combines education, social services, job creation, youth outreach and judicial activities across Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala. 

Europe and Central Asia: SPF programs in this region tend to be varied and address multiple forms of violence and fragility. The Europe and Central Asia Strategic Initiative on Fragility and Conflict (ESIF) focuses on conflict sensitive capacity building, youth inclusion, community based development and regional dialogue throughout the ECA region.

In addition to these programs, the SPF also funds a range of regionally focused and global initiatives. Small-sale SPF programming exists in the South Asia region (SAR) but is limited, mainly due to the presence of other large-scale country-based trust funds such as the Afghanistan Reconstruction Fund.