Outsourcing War and Peace


You are viewing an older version of the Yalebooks website. Please visit out new website with more updated information and a better user experience: https://www.yalebooks.com

Preserving Public Values in a World of Privatized Foreign Affairs

Laura A. Dickinson

View Inside Format: Cloth
Price: $61.00
Our shopping cart only supports Mozilla Firefox. Please ensure you're using that browser before attempting to purchase.

Over the past decade, states and international organizations have shifted a surprising range of foreign policy functions to private contractors. But who is accountable when the employees of foreign private firms do violence or create harm? This timely book describes the services that are now delivered by private contractors and the threat this trend poses to core public values of human rights, democratic accountability, and transparency. The author offers a series of concrete reforms that are necessary to expand traditional legal accountability, construct better mechanisms of public participation, and alter the organizational structure and institutional culture of contractor firms. The result is a pragmatic, nuanced, and comprehensive set of responses to the problem of foreign affairs privatization.

Laura A. Dickinson is the Foundation Professor of Law, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Arizona State University.

“The book will be an important contribution to the study of private security and its governance. Moreover, the book provides excellent advice to policymakers about what practical steps can be taken to remedy some of the deficiencies of the current system of security contracting.”—Alexander Cooley, Department of Political Science, Barnard College, Columbia University

“Three years after the bloody incident at Baghdad’s Nisoor Square, in which 17 unarmed civilians were killed and 24 wounded by private security contractors returning home after a run for the State Department, U.S. promises to reexamine heavy reliance on contractors and insure a system of accountability are ripe for a test. Laura Dickinson’s masterful study provides it—she methodically surveys the horizon and finds a very troubling scene, with few successful moves to address the accountability dilemma and more contractors than ever. On the other hand, her work is filled with insightful approaches to managing the very problems she spots.  It is likely to emerge as a valuable handbook for those dealing with legal issues surrounding security contractors in coming years.”—Scott Horton, Contributing Editor, Harper’s Magazine

"The government’s genie—the outsourcing of military support, diplomatic security, foreign aid, information technology, and, well, governance—won’t return to the bottle. Dickinson’s vision of a modern, privatized government, that not only promotes critical public values, but also expends resources efficiently and responsibly, is as thought-provoking as it is refreshing."—Steven L. Schooner, George Washington University

“In this urgent and timely book, Laura Dickinson explores the ways in which military contractors can be held accountable to the fundamental values that democratic nations must honor as they fight wars and build the peace.    Outsourcing War and Peace is historically alert, empirically persuasive, morally sensitive and policy relevant.   Dickinson persuasively argues that avoiding legal constraint on the operation of US contractors abroad is ruinous and she shows how increasing the legal accountability of contractors is crucial to the long-term success of the US military. Moreover, she develops a set of realistic and well-defended guidelines for bringing contractors under legal control. Outsourcing War and Peace is beautifully written and powerfully argued. It provides wise advice as the US works to regain its moral leadership in the world.” —Kim Lane Scheppele, Director, Program in Law and Public Affairs; Laurance S. Rockefeller Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs in the Woodrow Wilson School and University Center for Human Values, Princeton University

“Laura Dickinson's hard-hitting and carefully researched book shows how private firms can undermine key public values and what can be done about it.  Recognizing that private firms are here to stay whoever occupies the White House, Dickinson proposes better use of existing law, careful contractual drafting, enhanced public participation, and changes in private firms' organizational culture. Dickinson convincingly argues that the existing framework  is obsolete and needs a drastic overhaul to maintain fundamental democratic values in an out-sourced world.” —Susan Rose-Ackerman, Henry R. Luce Professor of Jurisprudence, Yale Law School

“Anyone involved with international humanitarian law -- academics, politicians, commanders and the subordinates who implement their intent, cadets, concerned citizens, and especially contractors -- should be focused on the messages in this masterwork, which provides important recommendations for preserving core ethical and legal norms in a swiftly changing operational context.” —Michael Newton, Professor of the Practice of Law, Vanderbilt University; Judge Advocate General's Corps (Retired)

“Dickinson’s thoughtful, knowledgeable, creative book offers a deep-cutting analysis and practical suggestions.  Dickinson expands the focus beyond the blunt instruments of lawsuits and prosecutions; she proposes reforms both inside and outside the law. This is an important book on a vital subject.” —David Luban, Georgetown University Law Center

“Anyone involved with humanitarian law should read the book of Laura A. Dickinson.”—The Global Journal

"Dickinson does a superb job of summarizing the issues connected with using private corporations to perform public functions overseas. . . . Written in a style accessible to all interested readers, Outsourcing War and Peace is a model of how lessons from the practice of law can inform and improve the conduct of foreign affairs. Highly recommended."—R.A. Strong, Choice

Winner of the 2011 Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize, as given by the Chicago-Kent College of Law

Selected as a Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2011 in the U.S. Politics category.

ISBN: 9780300144864
Publication Date: January 25, 2011
288 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4