Photo: Security Threat Assessment level, Dungu, DRC (Oistein Thorsen/Oxfam)

UN Security Zones in Port-au-Prince

The changing UN presence in Haiti opens up a window of opportunity to explore the social geography of this post-disaster country. After the withdrawal of MINUSTAH in April 2017, the UN has established a smaller peace mission, the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH). The mission’s leadership is currently reviewing the specific delimitation of security zones, with the objective to shrink the yellow zone to a smaller, more targeted area. This opens up the possibility to analyse and document the change of security zoning on local perceptions of crime and insecurity and of future economic development. This would be highly original as well of practical relevance to the UN: the insights will be significant to a wider arrange of countries, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Mali, Somalia and South Sudan (all countries with current security zones established by the UN). The current project acts as a pilot project, setting up a baseline for a future study of specific areas once the security zones are modified.

This is a collaborative project with Nicolas Lemay-Hébert and David Hudson. Seed funding has been provided under the ‘Resilient Cities’ theme of the University of Birmingham’s Institute for Global Innovation.