The future of the coalition


Much of this chapter relates to the future of coalitions that have achieved a certain legal or policy outcome that they have been seeking. Of course, not all coalitions are seeking a specific legal outcome such as a treaty, but many will need to think about how civil society will work to consolidate any gains they have made as a coalition. A key resource for this chapter is the 2008 book Banning Landmines: Disarmament, Citizen Diplomacy and Human Security, edited by Jody Williams, Stephen D. Goose and Mary Wareham.

Managing the external perception of the outcome that has been achieved is a key role of any coalition. Beyond a specific legal or policy instrument, coalitions can work to build a ‘norm’ of international behaviour, a standard by which every state or non-state actor will be judged, whether they have formally adhered to the relevant instruments or not. This is about influencing the practice of states and how the issue gets treated in public statements and discussions. Building a norm requires ongoing work to monitor and publicise practice as judged against the standards being set.

“It’s a big challenge for coalitions to consider their futures. Coalitions come together to fill a gap, but once that gap is filled they can struggle to redefine their role.”

Felicity Hill, former director, UN Office of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom


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