Policing transformation, transforming police: monitoring and evaluating the impact of police in UN peace operations

Hunt, Charles T. (2012). Policing transformation, transforming police: monitoring and evaluating the impact of police in UN peace operations PhD Thesis, School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies, The University of Queensland.

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Author Hunt, Charles T.
Thesis Title Policing transformation, transforming police: monitoring and evaluating the impact of police in UN peace operations
School, Centre or Institute School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2012-03-01
Thesis type PhD Thesis
Supervisor Alex Bellamy
Paul Boreham
Phil Orchard
Total pages 320
Total colour pages 6
Total black and white pages 314
Language eng
Subjects 160607 International Relations
Abstract/Summary United Nations (UN) peace operations are a vital component of the international community’s conflict management toolkit. They have evolved significantly since the end of the Cold War and one of the foremost developments has been the rise of UN policing (UNPOL), growing dramatically in number and evolving from a passive observation role to include frontline law enforcement activities and an intrusive institutional reform and capacity-building function. The short-term restoration of law and order and the more protracted development of domestic police and the criminal justice system following armed conflict have come to be seen as a sin qua non for missions that aim to lay the foundations for sustainable peace and development. However, attempts to ascertain the impact of UNPOL endeavours towards these goals have proven inadequate for reflecting and capturing the complex change processes at play. Consequently, important practical questions about how best to monitor and evaluate the impact of police in peace operations remain unanswered. The thesis has two main objectives. The first is to investigate the ways in which the effects of peace operations – and UNPOL in particular – are monitored and evaluated. The second is to develop a framework for M&E that enables more effective impact assessment in order to contribute to organisational learning in the field and at headquarters. Part 1 of the thesis explores how UN policing and M&E are currently undertaken and identifies the problems and challenges associated with conventional practice. Part 2 applies insights from complexity theory to develop an innovative framework for holistic M&E designed to overcome those shortcomings. In part 3 the utility and relevance of the framework is tested through case study field research in the United Nations Mission in Liberia. The methods employed included semi-structured interviews, focus groups and participant observation with a wide cross-section of stakeholders in the mission area. Empirical evidence is presented to demonstrate a number of strengths with the proposed framework when compared to existing approaches, but also to highlight a number of potential weaknesses that warrant revision and refinement. The central claim of this thesis is that to realise multiple potentialities M&E needs to be both re-thought and re-positioned. That is to say: first, new epistemological thinking needs to be brought to bear in the focus and design of an approach and associated selection of methods for its execution; and second, it needs to be embedded in the machinery of peace operations such that it is an intrinsic part of the way they are planned and managed. The thesis demonstrates that an approach grounded in these principles has the potential to overcome the shortcomings synonymous with extant orthodoxy. Furthermore, it is argued that by enhancing the relationship between field-level M&E and organisational learning, the findings of this research can make an important contribution to the pursuit of more professional and effective UN peace operations.
Keyword United Nations (UN)
Peace operations
Post-conflict peacebuilding
International policing
Security sector reform
Monitoring and evaluation
Organisational learning

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Created: Wed, 12 Sep 2012, 04:47:18 EST by Charles Hunt on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service