Violence Prevention Initiative in Burundi
Sixte Vigny Nimuraba, Project Director
Douglas Irvin-Erickson, Co-DirectorSince the beginning of 2013, GPP has been closely involved in violence prevention work in Burundi. With the support of Friends Committee for National Legislation, Peace Direct, and other organizations, GPP contributed to a then newly created violence prevention initiatives in Burundi, selecting key Burundian peace and human rights activists from across Burundian civil society organizations who could contribute to the initiative and whose institutions could join the Burundian Peacebuilding and Violence Prevention Network.
Since early 2015, GPP has worked to strengthen and expand the Burundi Peace and Nonviolence Network. Our activities focus on reaching out to Burundian youth who are the most likely to join youth armed groups and participate in cycles of violence. We provide peace and non-violence training to youth through sporting tournaments, cultural celebrations, and other festivities hosted with local partners. And we work to strengthen trust and peaceful, mutual exchanges between local governments, administrations, civil society institutions, social and civil leaders, political parties, and youth networks. You can read the our reports of violence prevention activities here.
The Gulf of Guinea and the Basin of Congo Initiative (GGBCI)
Aimé Césaire Atchom, Project Director
The social-cultural diversity of the Gulf of Guinea and the Basin of Congo regions belies geopolitical challenges in these interconnected regions, characterized by migratory movements of vulnerable populations and transnational political networks. The Gulf of Guinea and the Basin of Congo Initiative (GGBCI) works to strengthen the resiliency of networks of displaced persons and indigenous communities who are most vulnerable to conflict risks. We 1) monitor and report on the threats and cases of violence; 2) examine causes and effect of structural and cultural violence; 3) and articulate postcolonial perspectives in analyzing and resolving conflicts based on empirical and analytical inquiries.
Public-Private Partnership in Humanitarian Settings Initiative
Ziad Al Achkar, Project Director
The rising number of natural and man-made disasters over the past decade has put pressure on the existing humanitarian system. Funding mechanism and capacities for humanitarian operators to respond effectively to humanitarian disaster have been stretched to the limit. The need for a new approach has led to the development of public-private partnerships in humanitarian settings. By combining the expertise, knowledge, and capabilities of the two sectors, humanitarian operators can be better prepared to face new challenges in the coming century. As the number of refugees and IDP now represent 1% of the world’s population, these partnerships will prove to be crucial to assist those that have been forcibly displaced.
The PPP in Humanitarian Settings Initiative at George Mason University seeks to examine the impact of PPPs and identify new opportunities that can be translated into actionable policy and implemented programs on the ground. The initiative focuses on four broad areas of research: innovation, theory and education, law and ethics, and corporate social responsibility. The Initiative evaluates the impact of PPPs, identifies emerging challenges for the sector, and develops training and educational material that can be used to teach the next generation of scholars and practitioners to be better equipped to serve vulnerable populations.
Based at the School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution, the initiative serves as a platform to support emerging scholars, researchers, and practitioners in this field. The initiative conducts research on the application of Information Communication Technology (ICT) in the context of PPPs and assesses the impact changing technological and digital innovation has on the sector. The initiative works to advance research and programs centered on humanitarian practice and teaching.
The initiative prepares case studies on PPPs & ICT use to highlight best practices, areas of contention, and identify where gaps in the literature and practice exists. The initiative issues thematic papers to highlight emerging trends within the humanitarian sector. As part of the work conducted, the initiative partners with experts from the humanitarian, private, and academic sector to share experiences and identify practical applications to help humanitarian actors better serve the needs of vulnerable populations.
The initiative is committed to Open-Access Research. All the work and research conducted through this initiative will be public facing to ensure wide spread distribution to serve as a resource to the humanitarian community and improve the science of humanitarian response.
Contribute to the literature on humanitarian operations and public-private partnerships
Develop educational material focused on teaching humanitarian principles and operations
Act as a center for humanitarian research and a hub for new scholars & practitioners
Support the development of ethical practices in private-public humanitarian partnerships
Building an Architecture for Peace in America
Emily Sample, Co-Director
Douglas Irvin-Erickson, Co-Director
Over the last year, public discourse and a number of events reveal the escalation of a pernicious “us-versus-them” ideology in the U.S., in which calls to restore America’s greatness are increasingly accompanied by language dehumanizing minority groups, including racial, religious and ethnic groups as well as immigrant communities. While conditions vary across the country and for different groups, and protests have generally remained peaceful thus far, the possibility of inter-group violence is not the only concern for the peacebuilding community; the violation of the civil and human rights of vulnerable groups, both minority communities as well as the very poor in general, also present serious threats both to American democracy and core conceptions of justice.
This project brings together practitioners and scholars with the common goal of building an architecture for peace in the United States. We have held workshops in 2018 and 2019, and our book with Rowman and Littlefield is underway. We will be visiting campus and local communities over the next year to help build our movement for social change.