As peacekeeping missions continue to evolve to meet the demands of complex conflict environments, skills such as communication, negotiation, and mediation will continue to be critical in meeting the operational demands of modern peacekeeping missions, including protection of civilians (PoC) mandates, which have proliferated in the last decade.

USIP’S Work Training Peacekeepers

During a peacekeeping lessons learned conference in Rwanda, commanders returning from Darfur reported that much of their peacekeeping work involved some form of negotiation. This critical lesson learned from their deployments highlighted the need for their successors to receive training in conflict management skills in order to succeed. There was a strong need and desire for this type of training; however, there was very little time devoted to this topic during peacekeeping pre-deployment training.

To fill this training gap, the CMTP Program partnered with the U.S. Department of State’s African Contingency Operations and Training Assistance (ACOTA) program to deliver conflict management trainings for peacekeepers as part of of the U.S. contribution to the Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI) in Africa. The Academy’s conflict management training for peacekeepers focuses on the following topics:

  • Communication: How do I engage with a range of actors who are from a different culture and who may not trust me?
  • Conflict Analysis: How do I understand local conflicts?
  • Negotiation: How do I manage conflicts without using my weapon?
  • Mediation: How do I help others manage conflicts non-violently?
  • Protection of Civilians: How do I ensure civilians are protected in my operational environment? How do I create and maintain an environment that prevents Sexual Exploitation and Abuse?

Through a mix of experiential exercises, scenario-based problem solving activities, and role plays, this training introduces a range of skills that build upon one another and culminate in a simulation in which participants apply all that they have learned.

The demand for well-trained peacekeeping personnel will continue to grow as the world increasingly relies on peacekeeping missions. International stability requires peace operations, and peace operations require well-trained, effective peacekeepers with conflict management skills such as those trained by USIP through our partnership with ACOTA and the Global Peace Operations Initiative.

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Related Publications

USIP’s Work in Civ-Mil Relations

USIP’s Work in Civ-Mil Relations

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Establishing enduring peace in fragile and conflict-affected states requires a coordinated approach, one in which civilian and military agencies consciously collaborate. However, many groups aren’t aware of other organizations’ initiatives, don’t understand their purposes, and fail to synchronize resources—resulting in duplicative, piecemeal efforts, inefficient use of limited resources, and other negative consequences.

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Osama Gharizi on U.S. Objectives in Syria

Osama Gharizi on U.S. Objectives in Syria

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From Lebanon, Osama Gharizi shares his analysis about the clarity of U.S. objectives after retaliatory missile strikes targeting the Assad regime’s suspected chemical weapons facilities. Gharizi says these strikes sent a signal to Assad and his allies that there are limits to U.S. and coalition intervention in Syria. In turn, these limits strengthen Russia, Turkey, and Iran’s roles as the diplomatic arbiters to negotiate a peace deal. Separately, Gharizi addresses the risks associated with the suggestion of setting up an Arab force in Syria that could create further obscurity in terms of U.S. intent and objectives versus those of Arab countries forming such a force.

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Ambassador Bill Taylor on the Alleged Russian Use of Chemical Weapons

Ambassador Bill Taylor on the Alleged Russian Use of Chemical Weapons

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By: William B. Taylor

The alleged Russian use of a chemical weapon against a former Russian spy turned double agent in the United Kingdom led to scores of Russian diplomats being sent packing from the United States and Western Europe. Ambassador Taylor discusses the strong showing of unity among Western nations, and its effect on Russian intelligence gathering efforts and additional U.S. and international economic sanctions.

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