People's Peacemaking Perspectives
30 June 2012
Saferworld believes that the people who are most affected by conflict and insecurity should be at the heart of efforts to create peaceful solutions.
Our community security work has shown that where people are able to contribute to local discussions and participate in local decision-making on security and justice issues, the decisions taken are more likely to lead to lasting improvements in security and perceptions of safety. But it is also important that these local perspectives on conflict and insecurity are heard and understood by national and international actors.
This was the aim of the European Commission-funded People’s Peacemaking Perspectives project (PPP) carried out by Saferworld and our partner Conciliation Resources. The idea was to move beyond expert-led analyses that focus on national political elites and traditional security actors, and to reach out to ordinary people and those beyond national capitals whose voices are rarely accessible to, or heard by, an international audience.
Through these ‘participatory’ conflict analyses, the project produced some unique, and at times challenging, findings and policy recommendations for the EU and wider international community – creating direct connections between local people and international policy makers. Crucially, in many cases the process also contributed to peacebuilding by bringing together people with different views – often for the first time – to discuss ways to move beyond their current conflict.
We produced 18 analyses of conflict situations from around the world to provide the EU with evidence-based analysis from the perspective of the communities affected by those conflicts. The findings of these analyses were used to produce short policy briefs for the EU highlighting areas for improved political, policy and programming interventions. Working with partner organisations in country, we also helped build the capacity of local civil society to contribute to decisions and actions affecting them beyond the lifetime of the project.
To read the report and policy brief from each of the PPP studies click on the images below.
Through the PPP project we have gathered a wide range of evidence supporting participatory approaches, developed relationships with local partner organisations, extended the reach of our programmes and established ourselves as an important counterpart for EU and other international officials based in the countries in which we work. Crucially, the project has brought the views and perspective of local people affected by conflict right to the heart of decision-making in Brussels and other international capitals.
Click here to read more about the lessons learned from the PPP project and the implications for EU and other interantional donors when undertaking participatory approaches to conflict anlaysis.
Conciliation Resources, our project partner, conducted analyses in West Africa, the South Caucasus and Lebanon. Read them here.