Beyond Keeping Peace: United Nations Effectiveness in the Midst of Fighting

39 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2013

See all articles by Lisa Hultman

Lisa Hultman

Uppsala University

Jacob D. Kathman

University of Mississippi

Megan Shannon

University of Colorado at Boulder - Department of Political Science

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

UN peacekeeping missions are no longer intended solely to keep peace. Since the Cold War, most UN operations have been deployed to active conflicts. Yet, we know little about their ability to manage ongoing violence. We provide the first broad empirical examination of operational effectiveness in reducing battlefield violence in civil wars, arguing that peace operations more effectively reduce violence when deployed with larger numbers of personnel and equipped with armed troops. Examining post-Cold War civil conflicts in Africa, we employ unique data on monthly deployments of peacekeeping personnel and combine these with data on conflict violence. We find that while armed military troops effectively reduce combat hostilities between the belligerents, UN police and observers do not. Considering that the UN is often criticized for ineffectiveness, these results have important implications: if appropriately composed, UN peacekeeping reduces human suffering.

Suggested Citation

Hultman, Lisa and Kathman, Jacob D. and Shannon, Megan, Beyond Keeping Peace: United Nations Effectiveness in the Midst of Fighting (2013). APSA 2013 Annual Meeting Paper, American Political Science Association 2013 Annual Meeting, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2300139

Lisa Hultman (Contact Author)

Uppsala University ( email )

Box 513
Uppsala, 751 20
Sweden

Jacob D. Kathman

University of Mississippi ( email )

Oxford, MS 38677
United States

Megan Shannon

University of Colorado at Boulder - Department of Political Science ( email )

333 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309-0333
United States

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