2022 Partnership for Technology in Peacekeeping Symposium Largest to Date

With 322 delegates in attendance, the 6th International Partnership for Technology in Peacekeeping Symposium (6PTPS), held in the City of Tshwane (Pretoria), Republic of South Africa, 21-24 June, was the largest Symposium to date.  This annual event is a joint initiative of the Department of Operational Support and the Office of Information and Communications Technology to showcase field-oriented technology initiatives, and to generate feedback and discussion with interested Member States.

In addition to the host nation, 43 Member States sent representatives to the Symposium: 23 from Africa, nine from Asia, seven from Europe, three from the Americas and one from Australia/Oceania.

Under the topic “Informed – Aware – Effective”, the 6PTPS built upon the momentum and initiatives from prior symposia. Five major themes were examined in-depth:

  1. Protecting Peacekeepers
  2. Information-Driven Peace Operations
  3. Integrated Training and Capacity Building
  4. Eco-responsibility
  5. Telemedicine

More than 250 delegates actively participated in the breakout sessions dedicated to the five themes; attendance ranged from 20 to 90 participants per working group.

Seventeen presenters, including six from South Africa, addressed the plenary sessions, representing the UN Secretariat, Member States, academia, think tanks. Presentations covered a wide range of challenges in peace operations and how technology can help address them. Profiles of the speakers and topics can be found here.

Under-Secretary-General for Operational Support, Mr. Atul Khare, and the Republic of South Africa Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Ms. Thandi Modise, presided over the opening and closing ceremonies. Four UN Assistant Secretary-Generals also participated: 

  1. Mr. Bernardo Mariano Jr., Assistant Secretary-General, Chief Information Technology Officer, 
  2. General Birame Diop, Assistant Secretary-General, Military Adviser,
  3. Mr. Chandramouli Ramanathan, Assistant Secretary-General for Programme Planning, Finance and Budget & Controller, 
  4. Mr. Christian Saunders, Assistant Secretary-General for Supply Chain Management.

The Symposium, the first held in Africa, was deemed a major success, especially considering the underlying challenges related to COVID-19 travel restrictions and health protocols at the event venue. 

Detailed thematic reports on the outcomes from the Symposium will be shared with the Member States and UN stakeholders through official UN communication channels.

The 7th PTP Symposium will be hosted by Nepal in 2023 and is expected to be joined by the Department of Peace Operations in their Digital Transformation Strategy effort.