Conflict Prevention: Path to Peace or Grand Illusion?

Sample Chapter
  • Edited David Carment and Albrecht Schnabel

    ISBN-10: 92-808-1081-2,
    ISBN-13: 978-92-808-1081-3
    United Nations University Press
    February 2003

    Conflict Prevention evaluates the institutional record on conflict prevention, identifies current trends in conflict prevention practice, and makes recommendations on improving organizational capacity. This volume brings together a diverse group of individuals involved in conflict prevention activities; scholars from developed and developing countries, and practitioners with insights on the work of regional organizations and the United Nations.

    The first part of the book addresses the question: What is successful conflict prevention? The distinctive answers to this question reflect an understanding of conflict prevention that is both analytically rigorous and useful to practitioners. Conflict prevention can be understood as an important but understated element of statecraft and coercive diplomacy, as the physical presence of a deterrent force, or as a rehabilitative action taken to prevent the re-emergence of violence. Collectively, these interpretations point to the malleability of conflict prevention as a theory and as a policy.

    Contributors to the second part of the volume reflect on how existing mechanisms and instruments for conflict prevention can be properly evaluated and improved. They focus on several institutions that are at the forefront of conflict prevention policy: the EU, the OSCE, and NATO. They further show how informational and analytical needs can be used to enhance the quality of conflict analysis and its policy relevance. Drawing on experiences in Africa and the Americas, Conflict Prevention concludes with reflections on the efforts and challenges of building regional capacity in the developing world.

    David Carment is Associate Professor in the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs of Carleton University, Ottawa. Albrecht Schnabel is Academic Programme Officer in the Peace and Governance Programme of the United Nations University, Tokyo.

    Introduction: Conflict Prevention: A Concept in Search of a Policy. Part I: Conflict Prevention: Theory and Evidence • Conflict Prevention: Taking Stock • The Realism of Preventive Statecraft • Challenges to Preventive action: The cases of Kosovo and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia • Evaluating success and failure: Conflict Prevention in Bosnia and Cambodia. Part II: The Institutional Record • Regional Organisations and Conflict Prevention: CFSP and ESDI in Europe • A Good Idea but a rocky road ahead: The EU and the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe • The OSCE and Conflict Prevention in the Post-Soviet Region. Part III: Information and Response • Early warning and Prevention of Violent Conflict • Early Warning Analysis and Policy planning in UN preventative action • The IMF and Conflict Prevention. Part IV: Building Capacity at the Regional Level • Conflict Prevention in Africa: Establishing Conditions and Institutions Conducive to durable peace • Conflict Prevention in the Americas: The Organisation of American States (OAS)

    David Carment • Albrecht Schnabel • Bruce W. Jentleson • Raimo Väyrynen • Andrea Kathryn Talentino • David Last • John G. Cockell • Dane Rowlands • Troy Joseph • Simon Duke • Hans-Georg Ehrhart • Natalie Mychajlyszyn • Osvaldo Kreimer • Rasheed Draman