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2016 Venice Biennale: Dutch Pavilion, BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions

Het Nieuwe Instituut, Malkit Shoshan

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Morgan Day


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BLUE aims to involve architecture and design in the development of UN peacekeeping bases. As research fellow at Het Nieuwe Instituut, Shoshan focused on the peacekeeping mission as an expression of an ‘architecture of conflict’ and examined the Dutch approach to UN peacekeeping operations. The United Nations regards this work as exemplary in the way that it connects not only Defence, Diplomacy and Development. Shoshan adds a fourth ‘D’, that of Design. Through such an integrated approach to the design of UN bases, essential support can be given to local populations. Furthermore, the bases can leave a sustainable physical legacy that is beneficial to the development and stability of the local community, even after peacekeeping operations terminate.

BLUE proposes to see the UN base not as a closed fortress, but as a catalyst for local development. The research is focused on the legacy of UN bases in Africa, and on the integrated approach through which the Netherlands contributes to UN peacekeeping missions.
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