Principled Peacekeeping Works
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Over the past few years, the performance of UN peacekeeping operations has come increasingly under the spotlight. It started with financial pressure, especially but not exclusively by the United States Government, to reduce the overall cost of UN peacekeeping operations. This pressure has generated a number of initiatives, including the UN Secretary-General’s Action for Peacekeeping campaign, a series of strategic reviews of ongoing missions, the adoption of a new Comprehensive Performance Assessment System (CPAS) for UN Peacekeeping operations, and even a Security Council resolution dedicated to performance. UN peacekeeping has shown a remarkable capacity to adapt continuously to new challenges over the past 70 years, and there is no evidence to suggest that it will not continue to do so into the future. As researchers, we should stimulate this adaptive process by focussing attention on those aspects that have proven to be effective, and caution against those that have proven to be ineffective, by continuing to generate evidence of the factors that influence UN peace operation effectiveness via both comparative and longitudinal research studies.