A United Nations specialized agency, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) oversees and encourages the development of international civil aviation. ICAO is the largest and most important organization involved with aviation safety, and its technical standards, legal regulations, and operating procedures have been essential in the development of international commercial aviation. In the first history of this important UN body, David MacKenzie touches on issues ranging from the Cold War to economic regulation and development assistance. With the rise of aviation terrorism, MacKenzie demonstrates that ICAO has assumed a leading role in the struggle to secure civil aviation against sabotage and hijacking, while providing a forum for international concerns and disputes. A broad political-diplomatic history of the organization and the role that it played in the evolution of international civil aviation, this work offers a unique perspective on modern transportation and international cooperation.
David MacKenzie is an associate professor in the Department of History at Ryerson University.