This micro-course defines and describes conflict analysis processes and the ways in which they inform the development and implementation of peacebuilding programs. It presents the five main elements of USIP’s conflict analysis framework and describes how to ensure that one’s analysis is sensitive to the conflict and those impacted by it.

The commander of the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia visits the site of a truck-bomb attack allegedly conducted by al-Shabab in Mogadishu on Oct. 15, 2017. Photo: Flickr/AMISOM/Tobin Jones
The commander of the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia visits the site of a truck-bomb attack allegedly conducted by al-Shabab in Mogadishu on Oct. 15, 2017. Photo: Flickr/AMISOM/Tobin Jones

Course Overview & Key Objectives

By the end of this micro-course, participants will be able to achieve the following objectives:

  • Define conflict analysis and its importance;
  • Identify how conflict analysis accounts for the evolving nature of violent conflict;
  • Recognize how context and experience shapes conflict analysis; and
  • Identify different ways in which conflict analysis can be conducted.

Overview Video

Click on the video below for an overview of the course.

If you cannot view the video, click here.

Agenda

Section 1 – Introduction to Peace, Conflict, and Violence

Meet the course presenters and get a broad overview of what conflict analysis is and why it is important.

Section 2 – Definitions & Historical Context

Defines conflict analysis and how it accounts for the changing nature of violent conflict.

Section 3 – Stories from the Field

Examines how local context, experience, and knowledge help shape a conflict analysis in the field.

Section 4 – Theory & Practice

Discusses the different ways conflict can be viewed and analyzed.

Section 5 - Quiz

Checks your understanding and retention of key terms, concepts, and ideas presented in this course.

Section 6 - Scenario

Provides an opportunity to apply what you have learned to a fictional conflict scenario.

Section 7 - Reflections

Allows you to share what you have learned and read what others have learned from this course and how these skills and knowledge will impact the work we do.

Instructors and Guest Experts

Instructors

  • Jeff Helsing, Senior Advisor, United States Institute of Peace
  • Matthew Levinger, Director, National Security Studies Program; Program Director, Master of International Policy and Practice; George Washington University

Related Publications

A Month After U.S. Withdrawal, What is the State of Play in Syria?

A Month After U.S. Withdrawal, What is the State of Play in Syria?

Thursday, November 7, 2019

By: Mona Yacoubian

In the month since President Trump’s October 6 phone call with Turkish President Erdogan and the announced U.S. withdrawal from northeast Syria, the picture on the ground has changed immensely. Moscow has emerged as the key power broker in Syria. The Kurds, looking for protection from Turkish forces, are in Russian-brokered talks with the Assad government. These discussions could pave the way for an expanded Syrian government presence in the northeast for the first time in years. Successive agreements with Turkey negotiated first by the United States (October 17) and then by Russia (October 22) to halt Ankara’s fighting with the Kurds have been marred by violations.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Conflict Analysis & Prevention

Sarhang Hamasaeed on Iraq, Syria and ISIS

Sarhang Hamasaeed on Iraq, Syria and ISIS

Thursday, October 31, 2019

By: Sarhang Hamasaeed

Several major developments have rattled the region in recent weeks, including Iraq’s ongoing protests, the U.S. withdrawal from Syria and the death of ISIS leader al-Baghdadi. USIP’s Sarhang Hamasaeed says his death is a major blow to the terrorist group, but “the fact remains that … the enabling environment that gave rise to ISIS” is still present.

Type: Podcast

Conflict Analysis & Prevention; Violent Extremism

In Tunisia, Democratic Elections Were Easy—Now Comes the Hard Part

In Tunisia, Democratic Elections Were Easy—Now Comes the Hard Part

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

By: Thomas M. Hill; Dr. Elie Abouaoun

After two rounds of presidential elections which sandwiched parliamentary elections, Tunisia has accomplished something that has eluded every other country in the Middle East and North Africa: repeated free and fair democratic elections. And while that milestone may renew the faith of many in the trajectory of Tunisia’s democratic transition, the outcome of these elections is a harbinger of more difficult times.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Conflict Analysis & Prevention; Democracy & Governance

View All Publications