Great powers and UN force generation: a case study of UNAMID

Marina E. Henke*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


How are UN peacekeepers recruited? While we know a lot about UN member states’ general predispositions to participate in UN peacekeeping operations, we know very little about the actual UN force generation process. What role do the UN and its powerful member states play in this process? How do they interact to recruit UN forces? This article seeks answers to these questions by means of an in-depth case study of the force generation process for the UN–AU operation to Darfur (UNAMID). The case study relies on over 50 interviews with high-level decision-makers as well as newly declassified documents from the National Security Archive in Washington, DC. Overall the case study depicts a tantalizing division of labour between the technical expertise of the United Nations and the political power of key UN member states. It appears that UN peacekeeping contributions sometimes require the provision of financial and/or other incentives that go beyond regular UN reimbursements. As a result, powerful UN member states need to step in. However, UN officials play an important brokerage role in this process informing interested UN member states which countries would be suitable for bilateral démarches and why.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)468-492
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Peacekeeping
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 26 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Political Science and International Relations


Dive into the research topics of 'Great powers and UN force generation: a case study of UNAMID'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this