University of Oulu

Haddington, P., Kamunen, A., & Rautiainen, I. (2022). Noticing, monitoring and observing: Interactional grounds for joint and emergent seeing in UN military observer training. Journal of Pragmatics, 200, 119–138.

Noticing, monitoring and observing : interactional grounds for joint and emergent seeing in UN military observer training

Saved in:
Author: Haddington, Pentti1; Kamunen, Antti1; Rautiainen, Iira1
Organizations: 1Research Unit for Languages and Literature (English), Faculty of Humanities, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 1000, 90014, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 7 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2022
Publish Date: 2022-10-18


UN military observers patrol crisis areas in small teams. Their task is to determine whether seen military activity constitutes a violation to ceasefire agreements. Failing to see or establish a shared understanding of the activity can be damaging to the mission or put the teams in danger. We use ethnomethodology and conversation analysis to analyse how military observers verbalise and categorise military activity in ‘noticings’. The data are video recordings collected in car patrols in a training course. The analysis is based on fifty-three episodes of the patrols encountering unexpected military activity. The analysis focuses on the design features of and categorisation practices in noticing actions. It also shows how the noticings invite seeing the noticed feature from a particular perspective and in this way build a context for the joint and emergent activities of ‘monitoring’ and ‘observing’. The findings showcase how noticing actions and monitoring and observing are accomplished in interaction. They highlight the role of talk and embodiment as part of military observers’ professional competence and for maintaining situational awareness. The findings are relevant for and can be integrated in UN military observer training.

see all

Series: Journal of pragmatics
ISSN: 0378-2166
ISSN-E: 1879-1387
ISSN-L: 0378-2166
Volume: 200
Pages: 119 - 138
DOI: 10.1016/j.pragma.2022.06.005
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 6121 Languages
Funding: This study has been possible by the following funding: Project “iTask: Linguistic and embodied features of interactional multitasking”, funded by the Eudaimonia Institute of University of Oulu and the Academy of Finland (project number: 287219). Project ”PeaceTalk: Talk and Interaction in Multinational Crisis Management Training”, funded by the Academy of Finland (project number: 322199).
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 287219
Detailed Information: 287219 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
322199 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (