Keeping Watch

Monitoring Technology and Innovation in UN Peace Operations

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Knowledge is power. In the hands of United Nations peacekeepers, it can be a power for peace. Lacking knowledge, peacekeepers often find themselves powerless in the field, unable to protect themselves and others. This book explains how technologies can increase the range, effectiveness and accuracy of United Nations observation. It also identifies potential problems and pitfalls with modern technologies and the challenges to incorporate them into the United Nations system. It examines the few cases of technologies effectively harnessed in the field and offers creative recommendations to overcome the institutional inertia and widespread misunderstandings about how technology can complement human initiative in the quest for peace in war-torn lands.




I have many people to thank for helping me in this intellectual adventure – exploring the theory and practice of peacekeeping and the applications of technology. Professor John Polanyi at the University of Toronto first propelled me in this direction with an inspiring speech and a personal interview in 1982 on a proposed International Satellite Monitoring Agency. George Ignatieff, as President of Science for Peace, encouraged me to look at how science and technology could assist arms control and the United Nations, where he had served as Canadian ambassador and earned the moniker “peacemonger”, of which he was rightly proud.


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