"Whitfield's book on the multilateral conflict resolution mechanism known as 'groups of friends' is the first full-length study of this increasingly important practice of conflict resolution. It is a rare combination of a scholarly eye and an insider's perspective on the UN."

--Taylor Seybolt

Groups of states that attempt to manage or resolve violent conflict represent a particular manifestation of modern diplomacy in which diverse actors collaborate, compete, and coexist. Often identified as "friends" of the UN Secretary General or the conflict in question, these groups have had a decidedly mixed record of success, yet the reasons why have remained largely unexamined.

Friends Indeed book cover.

In Friends Indeed, a groundbreaking new USIP Press book, Teresa Whitfield analyzes the formation, actions and efficacy of groups of "friends" that have engaged with the United Nations. Bringing to her work both a scholarly eye and an insider’s perspective of the United Nations, Whitfield roots her analysis in a practical desire to establish what works best when, where and why. In the process, she arrives at conclusions and recommendations helpful to policymakers and others interested in international relations and conflict resolution.


  • Teresa Whitfield
    Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum, Social Science Research Council
  • Chester A. Crocker
    School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
  • Karin von Hippel
    Post-Conflict Reconstruction Project, Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Taylor Seybolt, Moderator
    Grant Program, U.S. Institute of Peace


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