Multidisciplinary futures of United Nations peace operations: A two-day hybrid conference

This event will be in Milton Keynes

Sponsored by the BISA Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding Working Group and the Centre for Global Challenges and Social Justice at The Open University, the conference brings together scholars developing new theoretical and empirical research on the future of UN peacekeeping operations.

The conference comes at a time when UN peacekeeping and peacebuilding are significantly underfunded and when implementation of the UN’s Sustaining Peace Agenda and the Secretary General’s Action of Peacekeeping Initiative is taking place amid multiple and compounding risks including Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, climate change, health emergencies and threats posed by new technologies. At the same time, missions are experiencing difficulties maintaining positive relations with host states, maintaining consent among local populations and adapting to financial and operational realities.

Papers cover a range of topics, including

  • The future of UN peace operations
  • Future partnerships between the UN and Regional institutions
  • New directions in peacebuilding interventions
  • Actors, accountability and the protection of civilians
  • Securitisation and peacekeeping

In addition, we will have keynote addresses from peacekeeping scholars and policy experts, as well as a drinks reception.


Day One

9:30  Arrival and refreshments (for in-person participants)

10:15 Welcome address and introduction

Georgina Holmes, The Open University

Nancy Annan and David Curran, Coventry University

10:30 Keynote talk: ‘Peacebuilding legacy’ by Dr Sukanya Podder, King’s College London

11:30  Break

11:45 Panel 1: Future partnerships between the UN and regional institutions

Chair: David Curran, Coventry University

  • Andrew E. Yaw Tchie, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs

  • Daeun Jung, University of Warwick

  • Andrea Gil, King’s College London

13:15 Lunch

14:15 Panel 2: New directions in peacebuilding interventions

Chair: Georgina Holmes, The Open University (TBC)

  • Marian Duran and Alberto Bueno, University of Grenada, Spain

  • Landon E. Hancock, Kent State University

  • Yi Yu, University of Warwick

  • Judith Jordà Frias, University of Coimbra, Portugal

15:45 Break

16:15 Panel 3: Securitisation and peacekeeping

Chair: David Curran, Coventry University

  • Christoph Dworscak, University of York, Sebastian Frowein, University of Leiden and Melanie Sauter, University of Oslo

  • Silvia Danielak, Georgetown University

  • Carlos Morgado Braz, University of South Wales

  • Krishna Kumar Verma, Jawaharlal Nehru University

17:15 Keynote address: ‘Studying UN peacekeeping at a time of crisis’ – Katia Coleman, University of British Columbia

18:30 Drinks reception (in-person participants)

Day Two

9:30  Arrival and refreshments (for in-person participants)

09:40 Panel 4: Actors, accountability and protection of civilians

Chair: Georgina Holmes, The Open University

  • Sabrina White, University of Leeds

  • Tom Buitelaar, Leiden University

  • Patryk I. Labuda, University of Zurich

  • Eleanor Gordon, Monash University

11:10 Break

11:30 Panel 5: The future of UN peace operations

Chair: David Curran, Coventry University

  • Alex Gilder, University of Reading

  • Ibrahim Magara, Loughborough University and Giulia Piccolino, Loughborough University

  • Amna Khan, National University of Science and Technology (NUST), Islamabad

  • Robert Bloomfield, University of Buckingham

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Keynote talk: ‘The possible implications of counter-terrorism for the future of peace operations”? – Dr Fernando Cavalcante, United Nations

15:15 Closing remarks

15:30 Conference ends

Virtual registration will close two hours before the event begins.

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