A team of three researchers from the Kennedy Institute, Maynooth University travelled to Afghanistan earlier this month for an IECEU field study that will provide new insights into Europe’s peacebuilding mission in the region. The team evaluated the role played by the European Police (EUPOL) in supporting efforts in Afghanistan to build a civilian police force and transition to peace. EUPOL’s mission, which has been ongoing since 2007, is now due to cease.
The team of researchers from the Edward M Kennedy Institute, comprised of Prof Anne Ryan, Dr Kieran Doyle and Dr William Matchett interviewed EUPOL officers, key stakeholders, and international and internal agencies in the region, including representatives of the Afghan security sector.
Following the trip, the team will submit a field study report to a special committee of EU, NGO, security experts, and government advisors. The committee will then agree a set of recommendations for the enhancement of the EU’s capabilities for intervention in conflicts.
Speaking about the visit, Prof Galavan, Academic Co-Director of the Institute, said: “Looking back over almost a decade of peacebuilding efforts in Afghanistan and the considerable investment made to that effect, the outstanding question is ‘Did Europe’s contribution help?’ If so, in what way? If not, how can we do better? By answering these questions we can re-orientate European policy focus towards what works and deliver significant improvements to future crisis intervention.”