News and Events

*24 March 2019: Release of new co-authored report for EPON on UNMISS in South Sudan

This latest EPON report assesses the extent to which the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) is achieving its current strategic objectives and what impact the Mission has had on the political and security situation in South Sudan.

The report focuses on the most recent period of UNMISS’ mandate (2014-18), aiming to provide a “snapshot” of the mission’s work across its four main mandate areas: the protection of civilians (PoC), facilitation of humanitarian delivery, promotion of human rights, and support to the peace process. As a large, multidimensional peacekeeping operation – with 17,000 troops, 2,000 police and 2,000 civilians – UNMISS has been provided with significant resources and an extraordinarily ambitious mandate. Assessing the match between resources and mandate, and the ways the Mission has adapted it’s approaches to be effective in extremely challenging circumstances is a key objective of this report.

Throughout its existence, UNMISS has been part of a much broader regional and international constellation of actors working to stabilise the country and encourage conflict parties to enter into a meaningful peace process. In many cases, UNMISS has played a limited supportive, coordinating, or otherwise indirect role in the overall trajectory of the country; in others, it is a central actor in the eyes of the people of South Sudan. This presents a challenge to any assessment of the Mission because, at most, UNMISS can be considered one contributor among many working together to end the civil war and lay the foundations for durable peace. Causality in these settings is difficult to establish. Nevertheless, drawing on the substantial data and analyses available, and interviews with more than 260 people in South Sudan and the region over several weeks, this study presents a set of evidence-based findings about the impact of the Mission and the factors that have enabled and inhibited the fulfilment of its mandate.

*31 December 2017: Dr Hunt presented award for excellence in research 

2017 RMIT Award for Research Excellence – Early Career Researcher (Enterprise)

“Dr Hunt is an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) Fellow and Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Global Research. His expertise is in evaluating the impacts of international conflict management and peacebuilding efforts. As an early career researcher, Dr Hunt has a growing reputation for research excellence. This is evidenced by the number of high-quality scholarly and policy-oriented publications as well as the support received as a chief investigator to advance his work on civilian protection in UN peace operations and security and justice sector reform in the aftermath of violent conflict (over $1.5 million of Australian Competitive Grant funding in the past five years).”;ID=z6aybfeq0hv4

* 8 August 2017: Release of new article in Global Change, Peace & Security journal

Latest article on understanding local sources of security and justice in conflict-affected/post-colonial societies. Free copies at this link

This article argues for a move away from the hubris associated with reflections of western ‘modernity’ and for peacebuilding efforts to countenance truly different forms of state/statehood – vital in an era where the ‘extension of state authority’ is increasingly seen as a panacea in international stabilization interventions.

This is the first of a few papers emerging from a 3-year project funded by the Australian foreign affairs dept. on which I’ve been fortunate to work alongside (and learn a lot from) the beneficent Anne Brown and Volker Boege, as well as undertaking numerous fieldwork trips to west Africa collaborating with the fabulous Kwesi Aning and Thomas Jaye (and their colleagues) at The Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre, Accra Ghana.

Watch this space for our forthcoming book:

  • Kwesi Aning, Anne Brown, Volker Boege and Charles T. Hunt eds. Exploring Peace Formation: Security and Justice in Post-Colonial States (Routledge)

Sure to be a page-turner!