Based on qualitative interviews in Juba with displaced people from Pibor County in 2013, this article examined internal state-building processes, international engagement with the state, and livelihoods and response in rural Pibor County.

The authors focus in particular on how violence and subsequent displacement have impacted people’s livelihoods, charting the severity of cattle raids and livestock destocking. They describe how underserved the county is in terms of essential services such as schools and health facilities, which ire largely operated by NGOs. Participants perceive Murle people to be underrepresented and marginalised at state and national levels.