TIME talked to Robert Maguire, director of the Haiti program at Trinity University in Washington, D.C.,
"Right now you have all these aid organizations and foreign governments pouring in money and time, but ultimately Haiti will recede a bit from the eyes of the world. The government obviously has to play a role in long-term, sustained rebuilding.
There's no doubt about that. Given that the government has essentially collapsed, in the short term there will be a need for ownership to be shifted to people who have the resources and ability [to rebuild].
How incapacitated is the government right now?
I think almost totally. Their physical infrastructure, which was weak to begin with, is pretty much gone. This is kind of an apocalyptic blow to this government. It was already what some people called a hollow government. It looked good on the outside, with some good, high-profile front people. But when you poked beneath, there weren't enough people with that expertise."