How Does Peacekeeping Held Secure Post-Conflict Peace?
11 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2018
Date Written: June 29, 2018
There is emerging consensus that international intervention can secure peace by helping combatants resolve commitment problems following civil wars. But how do interveners accomplish this? One theory suggests that intervention primarily works through force. Another claims that interveners commonly condition political, economic, and legal incentives on compliance with peace processes. Despite a rich literature on intervention, little effort has been made to systematically test the underlying mechanisms. This paper takes a first step toward this end, using new data on mechanisms employed by United Nations peacekeepers (1989-2012). Contrary to conventional wisdom, we question the extent to which military coercion is employed. Moreover, missions that employs conditional incentives is consistently correlated with a reduced risk of conflict recurrence, regardless of whether missions are also authorized to use force, and even when controlling for potential selection effects. These findings have important implications for international efforts to secure peace in civil conflicts worldwide.
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