Evgeniya Bakalova, Konstanze Jüngling

'Just Peace', Just Peace – What Peace

The US and Russia's Conceptual Approaches to Peace and Conflict Settlement


In theoretical terms ‘peace’ remains a largely contested concept. Academics propose competing definitions and conceptualizations, which possess their own normative and analytical advantages or disadvantages. Yet despite heated academic and theoretical debates, studies looking at the empirical understandings of peace and conflict-settlement strategies of different states are largely missing. In this paper, we set out to cover this gap and ask how similarities and differences in the actors’ conceptual understandings of peace play themselves out in their agreement and disagreement over the advocated ‘peace strategies’. Employing qualitative/quantitative content analysis of the statements made by the representatives of the Russian Federation and the United States at the UN Security Council, we analyze the debates around four recent and/or ongoing conflicts (Georgia 2008, Libya 2011, Syria 2011-2014 and Ukraine 2014). The study reveals that while agreement over the conceptuali­zation of peace does not impede further disagreement as to the advocated peace strategies, disagreement at the conceptual level breeds deeper disagreement.


– This Working Paper is currently under review and therefore not available for download –

Bibliographic record

Evgeniya Bakalova/Konstanze Jüngling, 'Just Peace', Just Peace – What Peace? The US and Russia’s Conceptual Approaches to Peace and Conflict Settlement, PRIF Working Paper No. 22, Frankfurt/M., 2014.