The United Nations’ and the European Union’s Conceptualizations of Peace: Risk Management, Post-Cold War Security and the Normalization of Croatia

Laura Zanotti


This article explores the United Nations (UN) and European Union (EU) conceptualizations of international security and, through the case of Croatia, their policies for peacekeeping and peace building. It argues that in the post-Cold War period, international organizations reconceived security as risk management. International and supra-national organizations adopted a variety of strategies aimed at transforming potentially disorderly states into disciplined and predictable actors. This political rationality echoes the disciplinary and governmental modalities of rule that Foucault described as emerging in Europe in classical age. The case of Croatia suggests that in the face of increasing complexity, security is enacted through clusters of institutions that deploy a combination of mechanisms of persuasion and coercion. These instruments include legal advice, institutional design, scrutiny, conditionality, and admission into or exclusion from international associations. International security has now been reconfigured as an endeavor that seeks to mobilize the cooperation of clusters of diverse institutions and the active engagement of its targets.

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Review of European Studies   ISSN 1918-7173 (Print)   ISSN 1918-7181 (Online)

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