Policy brief: The role of norms in international peace mediation

This policy brief assesses the role of norms in international peace mediation. Despite the topic attracting growing attention, the ways in which norms influence mediation processes are often not analysed systematically but rather prescriptively. In order to shed light on this debate from an analytical point of view, the brief suggests a three-step analytical framework. First, it suggests a categorisation of norms, then it assesses how mediators prioritise norms within this framework and finally it calls for a context-specific inclusion of norms in mediation processes. Thus, it argues that explicitly elucidating the different categories of norms, as well as their prioritisation by mediators, mandate-givers and negotiating parties, will lead to a more constructive debate and provide sustainable solutions that are owned by national, and supported by international, actors.