Increasing Operational Effectiveness in UN Peacekeeping: Toward a Gender-Balanced Force

Authored by: Donna Bridges and Debbie Horsfall

Categories: Peace Support Operations
Sub-Categories: Peacekeeping, Security Sector Reform (SSR), Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV)
Region: No Region
Year: 2009
Citation: Bridges, Donna and Debbie Horsfall. "Increasing Operational Effectiveness in UN Peacekeeping: Toward a Gender-Balanced Force." Armed Forces and Society 36, no. 1 (2009): 120–130.

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In this article, the authors argue that an increased percentage of female military personnel on UN peacekeeping operations is beneficial to operational effectiveness. They establish a case for a greater proportion of female service personnel that is based on three main premises: (1) a force adequately representative of female service personnel in peacekeeping operations will combat sexual misconduct perpetrated by some male soldiers, (2) peacekeeping is a task of great consequence and is best served by a force representative of both genders, (3) a greater proportion of female military personnel engenders trust and improves the reputation of peacekeepers among local populations. Literature reviews, including media reviews, research, and policy reports compiled by the Australian Defence Force (ADF), other Western militaries, and the United Nations, inform the above assertions and are augmented by research data from interviews with female personnel from the ADF.