Academic chapter/article/Conference paper

Technologies of Peace

Published: 10 Jun 2021
Summary:

This chapter examines the effects of the digital revolution and new information and communication technologies on peacekeeping and peacebuilding. The chapter is concerned with how digital and web-based information and communication technologies can be used to prevent and manage armed violence, foster inclusive societies, and ensure a durable and high-quality peace. The UN is increasingly adopting new technologies, particularly within the field of peacekeeping. To increase situational awareness, UN peacekeeping staff have crowdsourced information and used drones and satellite imagery. In addition, the analysis of peacekeeping data holds great potential for early warning. New technological tools can help foster collaboration, transform attitudes, and give a stronger voice to local communities. Online platforms have been used to monitor elections, document human rights abuses, and facilitate communication between members of different sides in a conflict. However, since one cannot simply assume that technology will change everything for the better, it is crucial to be aware of the ethical implications of the use of new peace technologies. The UN needs to be careful that early warning is translated into early action. Peacekeepers and peacebuilders should also be vigilant when it comes to mitigating the possible abuse and negative side effects of the use of peace technologies. The chapter concludes that peace technologies significantly influence the prospects for peacekeeping and peacebuilding, particularly when the use of technology helps peacekeepers and peacebuilders be more people-centric.