2020 Policy Forum

The Future of Peacekeeping in the Transition to a More Peaceful World:
Why UN peace operations are critical and need to be expanded


Given the impending American election and its potentially dramatic foreign policy implications, we are now planning our Conclusions and Recommendations webinar for early to mid-November. Please stay tuned as it will be worth the wait!


There will be a Keynote speaker, and five panels featuring, altogether, eleven speakers and five moderators. Following the Keynote Address, during the period ending Thursday 7 October, there will be four interlinked panels with the speakers and topics set out below. Since we have speakers on different continents, there may still be some small adjustments to the times. There will then be a one- week pause to consider and reflect, followed by a fifth panel on Conclusions and Recommendations.


Concept Note — The Group of 78 Virtual Policy Conference Webinar Series for 2020
The Future of Peacekeeping in the Transition to a More Peaceful World:
Why UN peace operations are critical and need to be expanded

Excerpts from the G78 Webinar Series Concept Note

United Nations Peacekeeping is central to conflict resolution, international stabilization and longer-term efforts to build a sustainable peace. With the support of the international community it has the potential to become a key enabler of a long-overdue global shift towards a more cooperative security environment.

Questions we will address include:

  1. What are the strengths and limits of UN Peacekeeping?
    2. Can UN peacekeeping advance both rule of law and negotiated solutions to spoilers and groups designated as terrorists, and can mandates retain mission impartiality?
    3. If UN peace operations cannot effectively address these challenges, what else may be needed when they increasingly encounter difficulty, as we have seen in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mali, Haiti and South Sudan?
    4. Can peacekeeping be adapted to respond more rapidly and effectively to crises before they escalate and become full-blown armed conflicts?

These conclusions are expected to help strengthen civil society’s understanding of these issues and to hone policy options for government decision makers.

For the full text of the Concept Note, click here.


Programme Sept 24th – Oct 4th, 2020

Thurs. Sept. 24, 2020, 7pm – 8pm EST

Keynote Address:

This will be a broad overview of the political and conflict environment in which UN Peacekeeping Operations (UNPKO) play an important role. The value-added of UN peacekeeping with the peace process as the “centre of gravity” of the overall mission will be highlighted.

Jean-Marie Guehenno, former USG for DPKO, former head of International Crisis Group (Speaking from New York City)

 

 Saturday Sept. 26, 2020 11am – 12pm EST (5 – 6pm CEST)

PANEL 1: Successes and Failures and Lessons Learned

The overall theme is the evolution of UN Peacekeeping and how that informs our approach to current challenges.

Moderator:

  • Peggy Mason, President of the Rideau Institute (confirmed)

Speakers:

  • Lise Morjé Howard, Prof of Government at Georgetown University, author of Power in Peacekeeping and UN Peacekeeping in Civil wars (Speaking from Paris, France) (confirmed)
  • Richard Gowan, UN Director, International Crisis Group, broad expertise and hands-on experience with UN. (Speaking from New York City.) (confirmed)

 

Monday Sept. 28, 2020, 7 – 8pm EST

Panel 2: CONTROVERSIES: Impartiality, Consent, Use of Force

What UNPKOs cannot or should not do in the military dimension especially in relation to the use of force. UN Peacekeeping partnerships in Africa.

Moderator:

  • Peggy Mason, President of the Rideau Institute (confirmed)

Speakers:

  • Jane Boulden, Professor, Department of Politics and Economics at the Royal Military College of Canada, with a particular focus on UN efforts to manage conflict. (Speaking from Kingston, Ontario.) (confirmed)
  • Paul Williams, Professor and Assoc Director of the Security Policy Studies program in the Elliott School of International Affairs at the George Washington University. Co-editor of Oxford Handbook on UN Peacekeeping. (Speaking from Washington, D.C.) (confirmed)

 

Saturday Oct.3rd 2020, 4 – 5pm EST

Panel 3: FUTURE Options for UN Peace Operations

 Revisiting UN Emergency Peace Service (UNEPS), primacy of peace process, operationalizing prevention of conflict.

Moderator:

  • Peggy Mason, President of the Rideau Institute (confirmed)

Speakers:

  • Victoria K. Holt, Vice President of the Stimson Centre, former U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Security (U.S. Dept of State) (speaking from Washington) (confirmed)
  • Peter Langille, Author and lead expert on UN Emergency Peace Service and “sustainable common security”. (Speaking from Ottawa) (confirmed)

 

Monday Oct.5th 2020, 7-8:30pm EST

Panel 4: Contributions by CANADA to UN Peace Operations

What might Canada do in terms of advocacy, funding, institution building, training, technology, to strengthen UN peace operations and contribute to a global shift toward sustainable peace and common security?

Moderator:

  • Jane Boulden, Fellow at the Queen’s University Centre for International and Defence Policy and a Professor at the Royal Military College of Canada (confirmed)

Speakers:

  • Peggy Mason, President of Rideau Institute, former Amb for Disarmament to the UN, former peacekeeping trainer (1995-2014), (Speaking from Ottawa) (confirmed)
  • Stephen Baranyi, Univ of Ottawa Assoc Prof in International Development and Global Studies, researching peacebuilding in fragile and conflict-affected states (Speaking from Ottawa) (confirmed)
  • Walter Dorn, RMC and Canadian Forces College professor, author, and a leading Canadian expert on UN peacekeeping including new technologies (Speaking from Toronto) (confirmed)

Panel 5: Conclusions and Recommendations

Following the Thanksgiving long weekend (10-12 October 2020), there will be a one-week pause to consider and reflect, followed by a fifth panel on overall conclusions and policy recommendations. (This session is only available to Full Conference Pass holders.)

Given the impending American election and its potentially dramatic foreign policy implications, we are now planning our Conclusions and Recommendations webinar for early to mid-November. Please stay tuned as it will be worth the wait!