Call for papers


The contribution of intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to the maintenance of international peace and security


Since the establishment of the United Nations, international intergovernmental organizations have played an increasingly important role in maintaining peace. Indeed, the UN Charter – in addition to having as one of its main purposes the maintenance of international peace and security (art. 1) – gives, in Chapter VIII, an important task to regional arrangements or organizations, in the context of measures both involving (art. 53) and not involving (art. 52) the use of armed force. In particular from the 90s regional initiatives have been often successful, as practice clearly demonstrates. Such initiatives enjoy “structural” benefits: the distrust, which disputing parties might have towards external actions, is mitigated; moreover, regional organizations have better control of the situation, since they know the history of the area, its traditions, local interests and internal affairs; finally, they are directly interested in avoiding the spreading of the dispute. The UN have effectively cooperated with regional organizations such as the African Union, the Arab League, the Organization of American States, but also with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and even with NATO (although with debatable results).

The actions carried on by international organizations in favour of peace have a complex and multifunctional nature, given the need to implement heterogeneous measures, such as social, economic, political and institutional ones. That's why non-governmental organizations (NGOs), too, have played a growing and significant role in maintaining international peace and security.

At the end of Cold War, endemic tensions existing in many countries have caused a new kind of conflicts. In particular intrastate or transnational conflicts, in which the ethnic and religious components often play a key role, involving the civil population in a relevant way. These conflicts are often characterised by great violence (which makes humanitarian aid even more necessary and urgent). Furthermore, the internal nature of the disputes and the aspirations to autonomy or independence frequently imply the collapse of State institutions.

Non-governmental organizations have proved they can operate effectively in such complex scenarios. Indeed, their flexible and non-top-down structure gives them a good capacity to dialogue with the components of civil society and not infrequently they are able to interact with local authorities thanks to the fact that they are recognised as super partes entities.

In the light of this scenario, Scienza e Pace / Science and Peace intends to devote a monothematic section of its next issue to the contribution of intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to the maintenance of international peace and security. Applicants should ideally be lawyers, political scientists, social scientists, economists, historians and philosophers, but contributes from other areas are also welcomed.

Scienza e Pace / Science and Peace encourages, therefore, the submission of articles pointing out the potentialities and advantages of the involvement of both intergovernmental organizations (in particular regional ones) and non-governmental organizations such as, among others, the Community of Sant’Egidio, Médecins Sans Frontières and Amnesty International, in peace operations. It also encourages the submission of articles dedicated to the interaction and mutual cooperation among the mentioned organizations and to the prospects for improvement of such cooperation.


Applications can be submitted via e-mail to the Editorial Committee (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and to the Guest Editor of the issue, Prof. Leonardo Pasquali (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), by 31 May 2019 in one of the following languages: Italian, English, French, Spanish or Portuguese.

Please include in your e-mail:

- the author's name, affiliation and contact details;

- a (max) 300 word abstract [.doc or .odt format] + eventual bibliography.

Applicants will be informed of the selection committee decision no later than 15 June 2019. The final paper must be sent by 30 September 2019. The papers must follow the Editorial Guidelines of the Journal.

In Winter 2020, in occasion of the publication of the monothematic issue of the Journal, a Conference will be held at the University of Pisa, in Pisa, Italy. It will be facilitated by Scienza e Pace / Science and Peace. The authors of the selected papers will be invited to present their paper either in Italian or in English.

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