PBF Voices Blog


The role of trust in peacebuilding in Kenya

21. Sep. 2015
Evalyn Monyani, Catholic Diocese of Malindi, Kenya

Trust cannot be imposed, coerced or bought. It must flow naturally from all the conflicting parties. The word trust in Kenya is used in the same breath as integration, reconciliation, and cohesion. It often comes up in national dialogues during calls for national healing and reconciliation. Over the years politicians have strategically enhanced mistrust between ethnic groups through stereotyping in order to mobilise support for themselves. In everyday life, even where there is no apparent conflict, mistrust between some ethnic groups is deeply entrenched in people’s minds, making interaction among them strained and sometimes highly volatile. Lately, this mistrust has been developed along religious lines with the increased number of terrorist attacks on innocent civilians.

Show post

There's no magic key

Ivana Franović, Centre fo Nonviolent Action Sarajevo-Belgrade

The invitation to serve as a resource person for the FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum got me confused. What can I say about the topic? Peacebuilding is our field, I'm coming from the Centre for Nonviolent Action Sarajevo-Belgrade. We are a peace organisation working on peacebuilding, dealing with the past and reconciliation in the region of the former Yugoslavia. We have almost two decades of experience in doing peacebuilding work in the Balkans, so that is not confusing. But global partnerships? During all this time we actually had very few international partners although we have quite some international contacts. But when it comes to partnerships, to doing something together, most of them run away. Only some brave stay. Or we run away, we are not so brave.

Show post

Re:think Peacebuilding – Kicking-off the debate 2015

Marc Baxmann & Natascha Zupan

“Seizing opportunities” was the theme of FriEnt’s first Peacebuilding Forum, which took place in Berlin in May 2014. Against the background of a changing global context for peacebuilding, the Forum ended with a strong call to re-think current peacebuilding policy and practice in terms of our partnership approaches, the responsiveness to local needs and the embracement of complexity concepts. However, there was a clear sense of optimism among participants that we are already moving into the right direction and that there are promising initiatives at both the policy and practice level.

Show post

Social services for peacebuilding

27. Aug. 2015
Sharif Baaser, UNICEF

Peacebuilding is a multi-faceted endeavour that normally requires a range of activities, in different sectors, and at different levels, all of which must be tailored to the needs of a specific context. In countries emerging from violent conflict, the most common peacebuilding interventions have traditionally focused on political, security and justice sectors. Support to constitutional processes, organization of elections, and reform of security and justice systems are normally, and understandably, among top priorities for peacebuilding that often attract high levels of international attention and donor funding. While historically limited attention has been paid to the socioeconomic dimensions of peacebuilding, particularly the role of basic social services, there is increasing recognition that equitable delivery and management of basic services like education, health, clean water and sanitation can make important contributions to peacebuilding.

Show post

Got complexity? How systems and complexity thinking can help peacebuilders

Rob Ricigliano, Co-Director Peacebuilding Program at University of Wisconsin

Peacebuilders are struggling with a series of challenging and important imperatives: how to build more sustainable, locally-owned initiatives; how to avoid negative impacts; and how to do more with fewer resources. Many have looked to systems thinking and com-lexity science for help. This post is meant to help inform that search. Before exploring what systems thinking and complexity science can offer peacebuilders, it is important to say what they do not offer. Systems thinking and complexity are not “magic bullets” that can instantly reveal the answer to intractable problems. And, while systems and complexity offer a powerful critique of more linear, short-term approaches, they are not a rejection of traditional practice. Finally, even though the rage in many parts of the field is to find the right tools, systems thinking and complexity approaches to peacebuilding are not just a set of tools. So what do systems thinking and complexity have to offer peacebuilders?

Show post

Strengthening constructive state-society relations in fragile and post-conflict situations. Some important considerations from Colombia

Lina María García, Departamento Nacional de Planeación, Colombia

Nowadays, in Colombia it is necessary to rethink how to transform and generate new kinds of relationships between the state and the (civil) society, not only for the post-conflict stage but to facilitate and make possible the peace dialogues and conversations taking place in Cuba. Colombian society is very divided and polarized around peacebuilding topics, even before an eventual post-conflict scenario. For example, the current dialogue process (Government-FARC) does not have the acceptance and support from the society as a whole. The protracted armed conflict has generated a social adaptation to war, a situation that makes some social groups believe that keeping the armed conflict that mainly affects the rural and isolated areas is more feasible and acceptable than achieving peace in the whole country (see also James Robinson, 2013).

Show post

Interview with Sweta Velpillay, Center for Peace and Conflict Studies

FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum

Show post

Interview with Emmanuel Bombande, Chair of the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) and Executive Director of WANEP

FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum

Show post

Interview with Erin McCandless, The New School for Public Engagement

FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum

Show post

Interview with Henk-Jan Brinkman, United Nations Peacebuilding Support Office

19. May. 2014
FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum

Show post

Blog Series 2018: Shifting Priorities for Peacebuilding?


Ahead of the FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum 2018 we have launched a series of expert blogs exploring how the changing international environment affects the support for peacebuilding in different countries. What has changed in recent years? Where are common trends and challenges? What can we learn from each other? You can find all posts in this blog series here.

Content