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Post-Conflict Reconstruction: Do We Understand What It Is?

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During the last 15 years, the international community, led by the United Nations, has developed a range of techniques for the prevention, management and resolution of conflict—for example, peace enforcement, sanctions, humanitarian intervention, peacemaking, peacekeeping, peacebuilding, and post-conflict reconstruction. Some of these techniques, such as peacemaking, have a long history and are widely understood. Others, including humanitarian intervention, have existed for a while but have only recently become a standard term in the international relations lexicon. Still others are newly emerged concepts, which scholars recognise widely but governments and international organisations understand less than perfectly, and which therefore prove difficult to implement. Post-conflict reconstruction is the prime example of this last category, closely followed by peacebuilding. Before embarking on an exploration of the characteristics of post-conflict reconstruction, it is necessary to state two caveats. ...

Document Type: Commentary

Publication date: March 1, 2005

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  • The St Antony's International Review (STAIR) is the only peer-reviewed journal of international affairs at the University of Oxford. Set up by graduate students of St Antony's College in 2005, the Review has carved out a distinctive niche as a cross-disciplinary outlet for research on the most pressing contemporary global issues, providing a forum in which emerging scholars can publish their work alongside established academics and policymakers. Past contributors include Robert O. Keohane, James N. Rosenau, and Alfred Stepan.
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