Institut für Weltgesellschaft
Institute for World Society Studies
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The discursive construction of conflict and international organizational decision-making processes between normative frameworks of peacebuilding and securitization - the case of the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI)

Funded by:

German Foundation for Peace Research
Principal Investigator: Prof. Dr. Mathias Albert

Project Team:

  • Dipl. Soz. Kerstin Eppert, Bielefeld University
  • Mitja Sienknecht, M.A., Bielefeld University/Viadrina, Frankfurt/Oder

Project Duration:

  2012 - 2014

Project Description:

The current project focuses on the impact which a ‘security overlay’ may have on the implementation of an international intervention. Using the case of the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI), the project comprises two main areas of research. Connecting organizational and sociocultural dimensions of international interventions, the project asks, firstly, how contextual frameworks of securitization and peacebuilding shape and guide decision‐making processes of international interventions in (post‐) conflict environments. It analyzes decision‐making strategies that are used in order to manage contextual uncertainty that emerges from the conflictive logics of securitization and peacebuilding. Secondly, the findings will be contextualized in view of the interrelation between world society (theory) and the construction of the ‘Other’.

The primary aim of the project is to contribute to a better understanding of the interdependence between the international political context, the parameters and operations of international assistance missions and the relevance of the normative frameworks of securitization and peacebuilding for the implementation of the missions. The secondary aim is to provide concrete input to the improvement of oversight mechanisms of international organizations involved in the missions by explaining the interdependence of the ‘re’‐ or ‘deconstruction’ of conflict and organizational decision making.


  • Eppert, Kerstin/Sienknecht, Mitja (forthcoming): Engaging with the "Threat"? Tracing De-securitization between UN Security Council and the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI)
  • Eppert, Kerstin/ Sienknecht, Mitja/ Albert, Mathias (2015): UN-Missionen als Strukturen internationaler Interventionen - organisationale Autonomisierungsprozesse aus weltgesellschaftstheoretischer Perspektive. In: da Conceição-Heldt, Eugénia/ Koch, Martin /Liese, Andrea (Eds.): Internationale Organisationen: Autonomie, Politisierung, interorganisationale Beziehungen und Wandel, Politische Vierteljahrsschrift, Sonderheft 49 (with financial support from the German Foundation for Peace Research).