The Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum (CPPF) strengthens the knowledge base and analytic capacity of the UN community in the fields of conflict prevention, conflict management, peacekeeping, and peacebuilding. Founded in 2000 as a program of the Social Science Research Council, CPPF grew out of a recommendation of the Panel Report on Peacekeeping (the “Brahimi Report”) of the same year, which highlighted the need for the UN to have quick and unfettered access to external expertise about the geographic and thematic areas in which the UN operates.

Recent structural reforms at the UN, as well as the growing complexity of international conflict and peace operations have increased the needs for CPPF’s work. CPPF helps bridge the gap between evidence-based research and UN policymaking. It gives UN decision-makers rapid access to leading scholars, experts, and practitioners outside the UN system through a range of formats, such as off-the-record meetings, informal briefings, and commissioned research. CPPF also uses its honest-broker convening function to increase coherence across UN programs and divisions by promoting understanding around shared analysis and ensuring that all relevant stakeholders across the system are represented.

CPPF is uniquely positioned to serve as a knowledge broker among senior UN decision-makers, researchers, and field experts. It combines first-hand experience with UN policy and operational planning with a vast network of global experts who complement the expertise of CPPF staff. Called upon when policy processes require an injection of external, contextual, and in-depth expertise, CPPF has a tested methodology for translating academic research into knowledge that can be directly applied to ongoing policy processes. Its ability to act nimbly, discretely, and efficiently makes CPPF a valuable resource both to UN leaders and donors. In the almost two decades since its founding, CPPF has worked with more than 69 UN agencies, departments, and missions, and has become a trusted partner of senior UN officials across the system.


CPPF strengthens and deepens UN work by engaging at three key junctures. First, it supports the Executive Office of the Secretary-General by providing expert analysis, periodic horizon-scanning, and substantive insights for regular reviews. Second, it enhances the capacity of regional directors and their teams to understand conflict patterns and improve regional strategies in conjunction with other UN initiatives. Finally, it strengthens the work of resident coordinators and other field-based leadership to promote system-wide coherence and deepen analytic and systemic knowledge. At each level, CPPF focuses on the following outputs:

· Convening experts to provide in-depth country analysis. CPPF convenes expert meetings among academics, journalists, members of civil society, and selected UN colleagues. These invitation-only, off-the-record gatherings – conducted under the Chatham House Rule – facilitate connections between UN field operations, executive departments, and external scholars and experts.

· Strengthening regional strategies. CPPF generates commissioned reports and identifies experts who can extend the knowledge base of UN decision-makers, from field leadership to special envoys. In light of the UN’s strategic goal to improve regional coordination of its programs, CPPF provides a vital linkage between UN programs and external experts, who can inform UN operations and provide regional context about specific operations.

· Supporting strategic reviews of peacekeeping operations. The United Nations has instituted a set of Independent Strategic Reviews of Peacekeeping Operation Missions and Special Political Missions. CPPF expands the knowledge base of these reviews by connecting UN teams with experts who can be frank about the performance of the United Nations.

· Providing ongoing support to executive-level review processes. The Executive Office of the Secretary-General has formalized new review protocols to coordinate activities and strengthen UN capacity for conflict and crisis prevention. CPPF systematically provides assistance for both Regional Monthly Reviews and Regional Quarterly Reviews by engaging external experts, reviewing methodologies, and improving substantive analysis of “deep-dives” on UN priorities.


CPPF offers additional support for donors by providing access to commissioned reports and meeting notes in order to improve awareness of UN priorities and initiatives. Donor-directed services include:

· Providing briefings about UN strategic priorities. In its work with the UN, CPPF routinely convenes off-the-record gatherings to connect external experts with UN decision-makers. In conjunction with these sessions, CPPF also provides donors access to special briefings with its experts to facilitate the free exchange of ideas on critical UN issues.

· Enhancing the capacity of member states seeking Security Council representation. CPPF works with member states who are campaigning for, or serving on, the Security Council. CPPF draws on its extensive experience supporting UN strategic priorities in order to help inform and guide delegations seeking Security Council representation.


The Social Science Research Council (SSRC) is an independent, international non-profit with the mission of mobilizing social science for the public good. Founded in 1923, the SSRC fosters research innovation, nurtures new generations of researchers, deepens inquiry within and across disciplines and sectors, and mobilizes necessary knowledge on important public issues. Based in Brooklyn, NY, the SSRC currently administers 22 programs in the U.S. and around the world. For more information on the SSRC and its programs, please visit www.ssrc.org. For more information about CPPF, contact cppf@ssrc.org.