Peacekeeping originally described unarmed military observers or the lightly-armed “blue helmets” who support a cease-fire or peace agreement. Today, with a much wider spectrum of tasks, several international and regional organizations – e.g. the EU, African Union or the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, OSCE – deploy so-called peace operations around the world.
The contemporary landscape in which these missions operate has changed dramatically over the last decades. Only recently, a UN Expert Panel has explored how these missions can better confront the dynamic challenges of the 21st century, stating that “no mission can be expected to succeed in today’s complex environments without an ability to innovate and make effective use of technology and no advantage should be withheld from those working for the cause of peace.” (Read the Panel’s full report here.)
This session examines how digital media and technological innovation cannot only support post-conflict peacekeeping but also augment the strategies to foster more effective community development, to empower the victims of conflict and to strengthen the challenging process of peacebuilding.
Speakers from Rwanda, South Sudan and Iraq will explain how they are attempting to shape the futures of their conflict-torn countries with digital innovation, like for instance the support initiative www.incike.rw using technology to support /INCIKE/, elderly survivors of the Rwandan genocide who lost their families and now have to fend for themselves.