Before Military Intervention: Upstream Stabilisation in Theory and Practice

Dr Rob Johnson, Director of the Changing Character of War Centre (CCW), and Dr Timothy Clack, Senior Research Fellow of the CCW, and Fellow and Lecturer of St Peter’s College, have co-edited Before Military Intervention: Upstream Stabilisation in Theory and Practice (Pelgrave Macmillan).
Dr Annette Idler, CCW's Director of Studies, and Senior Research Fellow at DPIR and at Pembroke College, has authored a chapter in the volume on Improving Responses to Protracted Conflict: Why Borderlands Matter for Upstream Engagement.
CCW brings together academics, policy makers and armed forces professionals in the study of armed conflict and its consequences, pursuing a variety of research themes including the future character of armed conflict, violent non-state actors, civil-military relations, strategy and decision-making, technological developments, and the moral-legal dimensions of war.


This book explores the natures of recent stabilisation efforts and global upstream threats. As prevention is always cheaper than the crisis of state collapse or civil war, the future character of conflict will increasingly involve upstream stabilisation operations. However, the unpredictability and variability of state instability requires governments and militaries to adopt a diversity of approach, conceptualisation and vocabulary. Offering perspectives from theory and practice, the chapters in this collection provide crucial insight into military roles and capabilities, opportunities, risks and limitations, doctrine, strategy and tactics, and measures of effect relevant to operations in upstream environments. This volume will appeal to researchers and practitioners seeking to understand historical and current conflict.

Dr Annette Idler is Senior Research Fellow at the Department of Politics and International Relations and at Pembroke College; Director of Studies, Changing Character of War ProgrammeDr Robert Johnson is Director of the Changing Character of War Centre