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Diplomatic Immunity

Frank and candid conversations about diplomacy and foreign affairs

Institute for the Study of Diplomacy

Georgetown University

Apr 19, 2023

Season 5, episode 6: Blue helmets have become one of the most visible signs of the UN in the world. These peacekeepers are sent where often nobody else wants to go and asked to accomplish what nobody else often will. After 70 years of service, UN peacekeeping has seen its successes and its well-publicized failures. So in this episode, we took a more thematic approach to multilateralism to look at the role that peacekeeping plays. When did it begin and why? How has it evolved over the years and how effective has it been? How might it change still to meet today's challenges? We discussed these questions and more with peacekeeping expert and Georgetown colleague, Dr. Lise Howard.

Lise Morjé Howard is Professor of Government and Foreign Service at Georgetown University and President of the Academic Council on the United Nations System. Her research and teaching interests span the fields of international relations, comparative politics, and conflict resolution. She has published articles and book chapters about civil wars, peacekeeping, and American foreign policy in many leading journals such as International Organization, International Security, International Studies Quarterly, International Peacekeeping, Global Governance, Foreign Affairs, and Oxford University Press. Her book UN Peacekeeping in Civil Wars (Cambridge University Press 2008), about organizational learning, won the 2010 book award from the Academic Council on the UN System. Her recent book, Power in Peacekeeping (Cambridge University Press 2019) is based on field research in the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lebanon, and Namibia. It won the 2021 book award from the International Security Studies Section of the International Studies Association. 

Dr. Howard earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from UC, Berkeley, and her A.B. in Soviet Studies from Barnard College, Columbia University. She has held yearlong fellowships at Stanford University, Harvard University, and the U.S. Institute of Peace. Dr. Howard is fluent in French and Russian, and speaks some Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, Spanish, and German. Prior to her career in academia, she served as Acting Director of UN Affairs for the New York City Commission for the United Nations.


More of Dr. Howard's recent Work:

Power in Peacekeeping (Cambridge University Press 2019)

"The Extraordinary Relationship between Peacekeeping and Peace," Cambridge University Press, November 2020

"The Astonishing Success of Peacekeeping," Foreign Affairs, November 2021.

"The Case for a Security Guarantee for Ukraine," Foreign Affairs, March 2023


Episode recorded: December 12, 2022


Produced by Daniel Henderson


Episode Image: Simulation exercise of a team of Egyptian blue helmets entirely composed of women in Douentza, in the Mopti region. UN Mission in Mali on Flickr


Diplomatic Immunity: Frank and candid conversations about diplomacy and foreign affairs


Diplomatic Immunity, a podcast from the Institute for the Study of Diplomacy at Georgetown University, brings you frank and candid conversations with experts on the issues facing diplomats and national security decision-makers around the world. 


Funding support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. 


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