COST Action IS 0805 - New Challenges of Peacekeeping and the European Union’s Role in Multilateral Crisis Management

From 2009 to 2013, GRIP and the University of Coimbra have managed a network of European researcher centres and universities funded by COST (COST Action IS 0805). The COST program is a European Union funding instrument which supports network activities between researchers across Europe (organization of seminars, conferences, researchers exchange programs and training schools). More information can be found here:

The COST Action IS 0805, entitled “New challenges of peacekeeping and the EU’s role in multilateral crisis management”, is a network of 30 European research institutes and universities critically investigating the role of the European Union (EU) in peace operations and crisis management. The list of the Action Members and the Action structure can be found here.

Given the growing importance of multilateral peacekeeping and crisis management missions around the world, the Action has stimulated exchanges among researchers on how, why, when and with whom the EU should envisage peace missions. The united aim is to pave the way toward the identification of a common European vision in the field of defence and crisis management.

The Action has organized in this framework international conferences, seminars and Training-Schools, as well as exchange of researchers among European institutes. Thanks to these activities, the Action has strengthened the cooperation among its Members, leading, among the others, to several publications. In addition, the Action has directly produced four main publications.


Mapping Research on European Peace Missions

The goal of this book is to guide the reader through the inextricable jungle towards quality publications that are either written by recognised and highly esteemed authors or which focus on original themes, whilst demonstrating a novel approach. Despite the apparent plethora of sources, the authors achieve the unexpected result of identifying four areas where reference sources are sorely lacking. The authors also succeed in the rare feat of not succumbing to customary but egregious Anglophile sectarianism. As well as the admittedly majority quota of English-speaking documentation, Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, Italian and Finnish articles are also included. The only criteria guiding this choice were quality and the pertinence of the subject.

The EU role in Multilateral Crisis Management – Findings and Conclusions

The Final Action Conference organized in Vienna in March 2013 has led to the publication this booklet. This publication deals with dynamics related to the underlining rationale of CSDP and of the politics of EU member states, including questions about legitimacy and credibility, as well as modelling aspects, such as the comprehensiveness and reach of CSDP. More deeply, matters related to decision-making procedures and implementation on the field are also discussed, as bridging the conceptual and operational dimensions of CSDP in its various configurations. The paper finalizes with a section on perspectives and recommendations for the EU’s role and place regarding peace operations.

National Visions of EU Defence Policy: Common Denominators and Misunderstandings

This project has inverted the typical analytical approach usually applied in order to identify a possible European grand strategy in the field of security and defence. Rather than initiating the inquiry by asking what are the common European interests and values that should be written in a grand strategy and that the EU should follow, the present study has analysed how the CSDP is seen by each targeted Member State as a tool to serve purely egoistic national interests. The aim of such approach is to identify the common denominators and the misunderstandings on this issue. This survey has been possible thanks to the scientific coordination of 7 field studies granted by COST in 7 national research institute of 7 prominent European capitals: Paris; London, Berlin, Rome, Madrid, Warsaw and Stockholm. The work has been deliberately carried out in national capitals in order to maintain a strict focus on national perspectives, without the potentially distorting influence of the “Brussels-mentality” or rhetoric.

Managing Crises, Making Peace: Towards a EU Vision on Peace Operations (forthcoming)

This will be the Final Action publication, edited by Palgrave. The book will be structured in three parts and 13 chapters. The volume examines and reflects critically how the EU has engaged in military and civilian peace operations. The contributors examine issues such as the decision-making process, the relationship between headquarters and field operators, gender issues, operational limits and possibilities, the local dimension, mandates and exit strategies.