IPI HomeNewsGeneral AnnouncementsIn Memoriam: Karen Ballentine (Aug 29, 1961 - July 23, 2010)

 

print print |  share share back back

General Announcements - August 04, 2010

In Memoriam: Karen Ballentine (Aug 29, 1961 - July 23, 2010)

It was with great sadness that IPI learned last week of the death of our former colleague Karen Ballentine, who passed away on July 23, 2010 after a brave battle with cancer.  Karen was a valued and respected colleague who devoted her life to improving knowledge and practice in the fields of peace, security, and development. She was an insightful and curious researcher, and a role model to many of us seeking to combine scholarship and practice. She made lasting contributions to the fields of conflict prevention, peacebuilding, and the economic dimensions of armed conflict. But beyond that, IPI remembers her as a generous colleague, with a fierce intellect and intensity, brilliant acumen and sense of humor.

Karen joined IPI (then the International Peace Academy) in September 2000 as our Research Coordinator, and later directed a multi-year research program on Economic Agendas of Civil Wars, producing two major books: with Jake Sherman, she co-edited The Political Economy of Armed Conflict: Beyond Greed and Grievance (Lynne Rienner, 2003); and with Heiko Nitzschke, she co-edited Profiting for Peace: Managing the Resource Dimensions of Civil War (Lynne Rienner, 2005). Her work suggested the need for conflict prevention and resolution policies to be informed by a systematic understanding of the economic dimensions of contemporary civil wars. She was a strong promoter of the importance of economic factors on warring parties' decisions to pursue war and peace. She became one of the leading experts on the links between natural resources and conflict, and her critical analysis and insights were often sought by colleagues and friends in the United Nations and the broader academic community.

David M. Malone, President of the International Development Research Centre (and President of IPA, 1998-2004), under whose tenure Karen served, remembers her: “Karen and I overlapped at the International Peace Academy for several years nearly a decade ago. She picked up on the greed and grievance debate where several others and I left off, and with her fine group of colleagues generated much deeper, more illuminating analysis. It was clear to all that we had an exceptional mind in our midst. Less well known is that Karen was an enthusiastic and sympathetic mentor to less experienced members of her team who each developed into first-rate analysts and professionals. She will be much missed.”

After IPI, she served as expert consultant to the UN Global Compact on the role of the private sector in zones of conflict and Senior Consultant for the New Security Program at Fafo Institute for Applied International Studies. She then joined the UN Development Program as Project Manager for the 2008 Crisis Prevention and Recovery report on “Post-Conflict Economic Recovery.”

Karen is survived by her father and step-mother Richard and Denise Ballentine, her mother Elizabeth Ballentine, her sisters Maureen, Leslie and Michelle and her nieces and nephew Kailin, Mallory and Cameron, all of Toronto. Cremation has taken place and a celebration of her life will be held in the coming months. Messages of condolence may be left on her Facebook page or the Globe and Mail Guest Book.

 
 

The Global Observatory

History Points to Rough Road Ahead for Ukraine Peace Deal
Previous deals can help shed light on the future of Minsk II.

Key Global Events to Watch in February
A list of key upcoming meetings and events with implications for global affairs.

2015: Ten Multilateral Events to Watch This Year
A list of ten events that are likely to impact international peace and security in 2015, compiled by IPI’s Francesco Mancini.

The Global Observatory, produced by IPI, provides timely analysis on peace and security issues, interviews with leading policymakers, interactive maps, and more.

Recent Events

February 26, 2015
ICM Briefs African Regional Group
On February 26th, Chair Kevin Rudd and Secretary-General Hardeep Puri briefed delegates from the UN’s African Group about the ICM and its work. This was the last of a series of briefings which the Commission held during the month of February to inform UN regional groups about its vision for an effective multilateral system.

February 24, 2015
Quantifying Peace
“Peace can and should be quantified,“ said Steve Killelea, Founder and Executive Chairman of the Institute for Economics and Peace while speaking at IPI’s Vienna office on January 24. Mr. Killelea stressed the need for focusing on positive peace rather than just the absence of conflict (negative peace), and outlined ways of defining and measuring peacefulness.

February 17, 2015
ICM Briefs UN Delegates from Eastern Europe, Western Europe, and Others
ICM Chair Kevin Rudd and Secretary-General Hardeep Puri briefed delegates from the Eastern European and Western European and Others groups on February 17th and 19th, respectively.

View More