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The United States Institute of Peace is an independent national institute, founded by Congress and dedicated to the proposition that a world without violent conflict is possible, practical, and essential for U.S. and global security. USIP pursues this vision on the ground in conflict zones, working with local partners to prevent conflicts from turning to bloodshed and to end it when they do. The Institute provides training, analysis, and other resources to people, organizations, and governments working to build peace.

Why a U.S. Institute of Peace?

USIP Brings Together Experts and Practitioners in Peacebuilding to:

  • Identify the best ways to counter violent extremism and promote religious tolerance.
  • Develop practical tools to improve the rule of law in chaotic environments after violent conflict. 
  • Rigorously test approaches to conflict prevention and peacebuilding to ensure the U.S. is using the most constructive and cost-effective tools to protect U.S. interests without violence. 
  • Use traditional media, social networking, and emerging technologies to track, prevent, and resolve violent conflict.

USIP Works to Advance Peace and U.S. National Security:

  • In Iraq, USIP and its partners facilitated local peace agreements for Mahmoudiya (2007) and Tikrit (2015) that ended communal warfare, let displaced families return home, and stabilized those regions. USIP is expanding its Iraqi partners’ capacity for such peacemaking, and recently supported a new pact to calm underlying tensions in Hawija once it is recaptured from ISIS.
  • In Afghanistan, USIP supports grassroots movements to oppose corruption, counter extremist messages, and promote peaceful elections. The Institute helps universities develop courses in conflict resolution, including in areas where the Taliban and ISIS are active. USIP assists the government in improving legal mechanisms to resolve land disputes, and advises on a strategy against extremism. USIP analysis also helps shape U.S. and NATO stabilization efforts.
  • In Colombia, USIP expanded the role of women and minorities in the negotiations that ended 50 years of civil war in 2016. The Institute trains, connects, and supports local organizations devise peaceful solutions for the inevitable conflicts that arise with implementation.
  • In Nigeria, USIP convenes the country’s influential state governors with eminent civic and religious leaders to develop a pragmatic strategy for reducing the root causes of radicalization and the Boko Haram insurgency.
  • Across Africa and the Middle East, USIP’s Generation Change program builds the skills of emerging youth leaders working for peace in communities across a dozen countries, from Nigeria to South Sudan to Yemen. USIP recently expanded the program to Colombia to strengthen the ability of that country’s young people to aid the difficult process of carrying out the peace accord.

Founded in 1984, USIP is funded by Congress and governed by a bipartisan Board of Directors. The board includes the secretaries of state and defense, the president of the National Defense University, and 12 others appointed by the president of the United States and confirmed by the Senate. 

USIP’s 300-plus staff members work abroad or at the Institute’s headquarters in Washington, an iconic building that faces the Lincoln Memorial and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and that symbolizes our nation’s commitment to peace.