This article connects the literature on the political economy of conflict with the mediation of peace processes and elaborates the conceptual and practical value offered by this perspective. It shows that armed conflicts and groups have economic dimensions that should be recognised and managed in peace processes. An economic perspective helps to understand the multiple disputes within an armed conflict, the disposition of armed groups to engage, and the economic interests of the parties. Focusing on mediated states opens new avenues of engagement through perceiving alternative sub-state authorities and economic networks as an opportunity for dispute resolution. Overall the political economy of conflict and the mediated state offer new vantage points to shape the planning and management of peace processes.