At a time when the United Nations and key powerful states are pulling back from robust engagement in conflict management, regional organizations and ad hoc groupings of diverse organizations - collective conflict management initiatives - are stepping into the vacuum. In order to understand these two approaches - and why and when they may be operating together - this article compares them as they affect three significant questions and challenges in contemporary conflict management: is an intervention legitimate, is it effective, and does it set precedents for the community of states and international organizations that might be inclined to act. It notes that these approaches bring different strengths to an intervention process. Regional organizations play an increasingly critical role in providing legitimacy for an intervention, while the fact that collective conflict management initiatives do not set a precedent for further engagement allows them to act with more flexibility. The article concludes that neither of these approaches is sufficient to create a successor security regime to the post-cold war international system. It suggests that global power diffusion will be constrained by the irreplaceable core security competencies of powerful states acting bilaterally or, when it suits them, through regional bodies or the UN Security Council.
International Peacekeeping
Norman Paterson School of International Affairs

Crocker, C.A. (Chester A.), Hampson, F.O, & Aall, P. (Pamela). (2014). A Global Security Vacuum Half-filled: Regional Organizations, Hybrid Groups and Security Management. International Peacekeeping, 21(1), 1–19. doi:10.1080/13533312.2014.895603