Towards more effective peace building: a conversation with Roland Paris

Since the early 1990s, the international community has become increasingly involved in efforts to (re-)build states that have been torn by war and violent conflict. Today, the United Nations alone is engaged in more than ten political and peace-building missions around the world. Roland Paris's most recent work, At War's End: Building Peace after Civil Conflict (2004) examines 14 of the major UN peace-building missions launched between 1989 and 1999. In particular, Paris questions whether the predominant models of peacekeeping, with their emphasis on rapid democratisation and market liberalisation, are appropriate in fragile post-conflict contexts. In this interview, Roland Paris shares what can learned from the peace-building record about its effectiveness as a means of preventing the recurrence of violence in post-conflict situations.