We are pleased to present the conference proceedings of papers delivered at the conference ‘The Future of Statebuilding: Ethics, Power and Responsibility in International Relations’ held at the University of Westminster, 9-11 October 2009.

University of Westminster flag

Hosted by the University of Westminster, the conference was also generously financially supported by the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Westminster, the Sovereignty And Its Discontents working group of the British International Studies Association, and the Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding published by Routledge.

Statebuilding in International Politics

In the post-Cold War era intra-state issues, from ethnic cleansing and underdevelopment to terrorism and civil war, have dominated the international security agenda. This has led to calls for more direct and invasive international involvement in the internal affairs of states, which in turn has prompted further integration of domestic and international issues. This has been manifest in the marked increase in both UN-sanctioned and unilateral interventions, UN field operations and numerous other statebuilding activities. The purpose of this conference was to interrogate the contemporary currency of intervention and statebuilding, and highlight the key questions and challenges raised by recent practice.

The conference assembled a variety of speakers from different perspectives and disciplines to examine the prospects for statebuilding in international order. The speakers assembled and range of views discussed indicate just how much scholarly energy has been directed at issues of statebuilding in recent years. These proceedings give one some indication of the newfound complexity within this field of study. Academics from the fields of International Relations, International Law, Security Studies, Development and Postcolonial Studies were all represented at the conference, among others.

Although the papers in this collection are a partial cross-section of all the papers presented at the conference, they are testimony to the depth and sophistication of the discussion held across those days. Please note that the respective authors within this collection retain copyright over their work.

We would like to once again thank all the speakers who presented papers at the conference, and everyone who attended and contributed to help make the conference such a success.

Contributor Details

Simon Chesterman is Vice Dean and Professor of Law at the National University of Singapore and Global Professor and Director of the New York University School of Law Singapore Programme. Educated in Melbourne, Beijing, Amsterdam, and Oxford, his books include You, The People: The United Nations, Transitional Administration, and State-Building (OUP, 2004).

Download: State-Building and International Law

Giulio Venneri is lecturer at the School of Government at LUISS - Guido Carli University in Rome. He holds a Ph.D. in International Studies from the University of Trento.  

Download: Conquered’ vs. ‘Octroyée’ Ownership: Police Reform, Conditionality and the EU’s Member-Statebuilding in Bosnia-Herzegovina

Tobias Debiel is Professor of Political Science at the Institut fur Politikwissenschaft at the University of Duisburg Essen.
Nils Goede
Holger Niemann

Download: Norm-building through the practice of interventionism: How the UN Security Council contributed to the emergence of the R2P

Kristóf Domina is is a Budapest-based freelance foreign- and security policy analyst currently focusing on issues of non-conventional and emerging threats. He is also a contributing analyst for the German Marshall Fund of the United States. After starting his career by participating in the establishment of the International Center for Democratic Transition of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Domina was also a founder of the Hungarian Atlantic Council's Youth Section and a Marshall Memorial Fellow of the German Marshall Fund. Mr. Domina holds an MA in International Relations from Corvinus University of Budapest and also studied at the National Defense University

Download: Failed States: Rhetoric and Reality. The need for 'fewer' failed states,but more robust interventions

John Heathershaw is Lecturer in Politics at the University of Exeter and author of Post-Conflict Tajikistan: the politics of peacebuilding and the emergence of legitimate order (Routledge 2009)

Download: Post-Conflict Peacebuilding and the Idea of “Virtual Peace”: the triumph of form and process over content in international interventionism

Matthew Saul is a lecturer in law at Durham University. His research interests are within the field of public international law, particularly issues related to conflict and post-conflict situations. He has published on aspects of general international law, international human rights law, international humanitarian law, and dispute settlement.

Download: International Law and the Will of the People in Post-Conflict Rebuilding

Patrice C. McMahon is Associate Professor at the University of Nebraska, and is the author of Taming Ethnic Hatreds: Ethnic Cooperation and Transnational Networks (2007) and American Foreign Policy in a Globalized World (2006) and International Human Rights and Diversity (2004). Her research has appeared in Foreign Affairs, Political Science Quarterly, Democratization, and Ethnopolitics.

Download: NGOs and Peacebuilding: Challenges and choices for future research

Michael Pugh is Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Bradford, Leverhulme Emeritus Fellow and editor of the journal International Peacekeeping. He has written extensively on peacekeeping and peacebuilding and is the co-editor, with Neil Cooper and Mandy Turner, of Whose Peace? Critical Perspectives on the Political Economy of Peacebuilding (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008).

Download: Work, Welfare, Resistance: Liberal Peace After the Casino Crisis

Adam Branch is assistant professor of political science at San Diego State University.  His work examines the politics of humanitarian and human rights intervention into civil war in Africa; he has recently completed a book manuscript, Displacing Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda, under contract at Oxford UP

Download: The Irresponsibility of R2P in Africa

Charlotte Steinorth holds a law and political science degree from the Université-Panthéon-Assas and an LLM and Ph.D. from LSE. She is a research fellow at Heidelberg’s Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law. Her main areas of research are international law, democratization and human rights.

Download: The United Nations, Post-Conflict Institution-Building and Thin Concepts of Democracy

Sarah B. K. von Billerbeck is a D.Phil. candidate in International Relations at the University of Oxford, researching local ownership and UN peacekeeping. She holds a BA from UC Berkeley and an MS from Georgetown University, and has previously worked for the UN peacekeeping mission in DR Congo.

Download: Whose Peace? Local Ownership and UN Peacebuilding

Press and media enquiries

Contact us on:

[email protected]