Oliver P. Richmond, Gëzim Visoka, and Ioannis Tellidis, (2023) Peace in Digital International Relations: Prospects and Limitations, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
The international architecture of peacebuilding and statebuilding is currently responding to a shift from ‘analogue’ to ‘digital’ approaches in international relations. This is affecting conflict management, intervention, peacebuilding, and the all-important role of civil society. This Element analyses the potential that these new digital forms of international relations offer for the reform of peace praxis – namely, the enhancement of critical agency across networks and scales, the expansion of claims for rights and the mitigation of obstacles posed by sovereignty, locality, and territoriality. The Element also addresses the parallel limitations of digital technologies in terms of political emancipation related to subaltern claims, the risk of co-optation by historical and analogue power structures, institutions, and actors. We conclude that though aspects of emerging digital approaches to making peace are promising, they cannot yet bypass or resolve older, analogue conflict dynamics revolving around power-relations, territorialism, and state formation.