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Publication details for Dr Stefanie Kappler

Kappler, Stefanie (2014). Local Agency and Peacebuilding. EU and International Engagement in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Cyprus and South Africa. Palgrave.
  • Publication type: Authored book

Author(s) from Durham


While agency has become the new buzzword for researchers in the area of peace and conflict studies, it remains a concept that is both under-theorised and contested in terms of how it transforms the disciplines of Politics, International Relations and Peace and Conflict. In this book, Kappler develops a relational and spatial concept of agency, enhancing our understanding of the complex and subtle processes through which peacebuilding actors engage and interact with each other.

Using the EU's engagement in peacebuilding in Bosnia-Herzegovina as a primary case study, this book investigates outlines competing discourse clusters in the interplay between the EU and local actors engaged in creative cultural activities. An investigation of the contested nature of agency in its ability to give meaning to peacebuilding highlights the potential of local actors to impact upon and resist institutional discourses. Kappler also conveys the challenges of peacebuilding in Cyprus where there is a lack of connection between local and international discursive spaces, whilst the more limited depth of international intervention in South Africa in turn suggests a more flexible set of actors as well as more dynamic interaction in the emergence of peace-related discourses.

This book provides an original discussion of agency in relation to EU peacebuilding, exploring the subtle forms of interaction between actors and framing the analysis in ways that allow for practical application.