New academic article: Approaching the European Union’s crisis response and international peacekeeping from below

Morten Bøås, Bård Drange

The European Union (EU) is rapidly increasing its crisis response mechanisms in areas far away from its European heartland. Currently, EU activities in crisis response are taking place in areas from Afghanistan and Iraq to the sand dunes of the Sahel and Mali. In this article we critically explore the new and much more proactive role of the EU in what must be defined as international peacekeeping, arguing that the new role of the EU cannot only be studied from the perspective of mandate and doctrine development in Europe alone, but that we also must seek to understand how the new role of the EU is interpreted by the population that supposedly are the beneficiaries of EU polices and programming. In order to achieve this we utilise a new data set that we have compiled where we have a strong combination of qualitative and quantitative data about how specific target populations in core countries for EU crisis response (see Bøås, Bjørkheim and Kvamme 2018), namely Afghanistan, Iraq and Mali understand the role of the EU and its attempts at crisis response.