United Nations peacekeeping: Limitations and prospects

Nadege Sheehan


While the demand for U.N. peacekeeping operations increases, the production of these operations remains problematic. The inherent characteristics of peacekeeping make it difficult to efficiently produce U.N. peace missions. Importantly, a country's participation in a U.N. peacekeeping operation is based on its national interests for that mission. The system of discretionary contributions of national armies currently used by the United Nations, as well as the structure of the U.N. peacekeeping scale of assessment, may be favorable to developing countries. However, they do not help increase contributions. Under such systems, a nation's participation in a mission depends largely on cost/benefit calculations. This article explains that instead of fighting the free-riding problem, one might seek to more deliberately pursue and implement a system whereby nations concentrate their contributing efforts to missions in which they do have national interests. To that effect, the article presents and briefly assesses relevant suggestions made by various scholars on potential structures that would best produce U.N. peacekeeping.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15355/epsj.3.2.74


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