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Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Expert Workshop (Washington D.C., June 2012)

Civilian Expertise in Conflict and Stabilization: Shifting Parameters

 

This cross-government workshop identified the requirements for future scenarios in crisis prevention and conflict management, and strategies for organisations contributing to conflict and stabilisation missions.

 

‘Civilian expertise’ has become a catch-all phrase in stabilisation and reconstruction missions over the past decade. Leaders, policy-makers and the military have cultivated high expectations about the contribution that civilians can make to the stabilisation and recovery of countries threatened or struck by war, crisis or disaster. Government agencies and international organisations have grappled with questions over how to select, prepare and support the individuals who bring this expertise to the table.

 

There is broad consensus within the policy community that stability operations as conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan are not the main, or indeed an appropriate benchmark for the further development of civilian capacity for peace support and stabilisation missions. Yet future scenarios are notoriously hard to predict. This workshop helped to frame the scenarios for what the ‘new normal’ will become.

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