The United Nations (UN), established in 1945, is an international organization with states as members.
The UN functions both as an arena for states to negotiate international rules and norms, and as an actor set to monitor these rules and engage in activities to further specific goals, such as peacekeeping operations and humanitarian relief. The UN is unique among international organizations because it represents the most encompassing and ambitious attempt to institutionalize cooperation and to regulate inter-state relations through rules. The UN consists of a General Assembly where all member states are represented, a Security Council, and a Secretariat. The broader UN system is made up of programme and funds like the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and specialized agencies like the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
At NUPI, central areas of research on the UN include:
- the evolution of norms of non-intervention
- the politics of the UN Security Council and the role of global summits
- the legitimacy and efficacy of the UN’s operational activities
News about united nations
31 May 2019
On 14-16 May 2019, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) and Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs co-hosted the 2019 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development titled ‘From crisis response to peacebuilding: Achieving synergies’.
23 Oct 2018
In this book launch interview, editors Mateja Peter and Cedric de Coning reflect upon findings from their most recent book, identifying four global transformations and their implications for UN peace operations.
23 Oct 2018
The global order is changing – how will that uncertainty impact UN peace operations?
Publications about united nations
: NUPI Report
2019In November 2018, the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace, inaugurated one year earlier ‘to develop proposals for norms and policies to enhance international security and stability and guide responsible state and non-state behavior in cyberspace’, launched six norms pointing ‘the way to...
2019The four articles in this special section focus on norms in UN peacekeeping (gender, impartiality, human rights, and environmentalism) and how they are implemented in practice. They look at the evolution of these norms over time; take an explicit theoretical perspective (feminist institutionalism, norm...
Research projects about united nations
Photograph: miguelb/Creative Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0
Why is there not more Nordic cooperation on the international arena, when Nordic politicians so often express a willingness to develop cooperation in this field further? This project aims to build new...
Photograph: NTB Scanpix
2018 - 2021 (Ongoing)
The project will look deeper into the conservative New Right in countries such as Russia, the US, and Europe, examining in particular the alternative visions of Western civilisational order that these...
Foto: UN Photo
2017 - 2020 (Ongoing)
The aim of this project is to strengthen the ability of UN peace operations to respond to global security challenges and improve their effectiveness.