Approximately 1.4 billion people live in countries that suffer from conflict and turmoil and peacebuilding remains one of the world’s biggest challenges. Peacebuilding practitioners are well steeped in their technical field of expertise, but are much less well trained in maneuvering through complex socio-political realities. This game serves as a safe space in which practitioners can practice their competencies in a virtual environment.

Welcome to Mission Zhobia

Game Experience

Players deploy to a fictitious country recently devastated by violent conflict, tasked with the important mission to strengthen the rule of law in the country. Players need to take decisions on the location of a court house, the type of legal system to support, and the people to train. Players will face challenges such as low capacity of institutions; lack of trust by the population in the government; flare-up of conflict, and highly divergent perspectives on how justice can and should be delivered to the population.

Players design an implementation plan at the end of the game.

Learning Objectives

Practitioners who are being deployed to conflict-affected settings require strong peacebuilding competencies to engage in a conflict-sensitive manner. This game aims to teach the key peacebuilding competencies.

This game intends to strengthen these peacebuilding competencies:

  • Conducting context and conflict analysis on an on-going basis;
  • Identify and analyse stakeholder perspectives, views and interests;
  • Engage effectively in dialogue and build trust with stakeholders;
  • Actively engage local stakeholders in finding solutions that fit the context; and
  • Use the analysis and insight gained to reflect on the implicit theory of change and adjust programming accordingly.


Engage in dialogue with local stakeholders.

Learn More


Testimonial by Dimtri Titov, Former Assistant Secretary-General for Rule of Law and Security Institutions, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, United Nations

"As a strong supporter of using innovative technology to facilitate continuous learning, I look forward to seeing this game fully developed and ready for action. It will help those in the peacebuilding community understand how, in real terms, we work to build strong rule of law institutions in conflict-affected countries." - Dmitry Titov, Former Assistant Secretary-General for Rule of Law and Security Institutions, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, United Nations


Testimonial by Mika-Markus Leinonen, Former CIVCOM Chair, European External Action Service, European Union

“As the Chairman of the EU Committee for Civilian Aspects of Crisis Management, I have always underlined the importance of training both the civilian experts to be deployed to our missions as well as the staff working at HQs in Brussels and the Capitals. I very much welcome the idea of this innovative concept and look forward to it being made available to the crisis management community soon.” - Mika-Markus Leinonen, Former CIVCOM Chair, European External Action Service, European Union


Testimonial by Mr. Oscar Fernandez-Taranco, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support

“Mission Zhobia is a much-needed innovation to enhance peacebuilding skills among actors working in conflict-affected settings. Peacebuilding is an art and Mission Zhobia demonstrates that in many ways. The game simulates very realistic and common challenges of working in countries affected by conflict, such as rapidly changing political circumstances, low capacities, lack of trust and tense rivalries. I highly commend the PeaceNexus Foundation for taking this initiative and developing this tool with and its partners and I hope that many will start playing this game." - Mr. Oscar Fernandez-Taranco, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support


Initiated by the PeaceNexus Foundation, a consortium of international peacebuilding institutions. 


Who Can Play?

The game is available to play for free online. The member organisations hope it will help those working in conflict-affected contexts to be better able to analyse the environment and to engage in a more conflict sensitive way. Members of the general public who are interested in understanding and navigating the challenges faced by working in a peacebuilding environment are invited to play the game too.

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After Bashir, A New Dawn in Sudan? (Part 1)

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

By: Susan Stigant; Elizabeth Murray

Longtime Sudanese dictator Omar al-Bashir was ousted last Thursday, 30 years after he took power in the same fashion he was overthrown: by a military coup. The military takeover was spurred by months of popular protests over rising food prices, economic mismanagement and demands...

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Myanmar’s 2020 Elections and Conflict Dynamics

Myanmar’s 2020 Elections and Conflict Dynamics

Monday, April 15, 2019

By: Mary Callahan; Myo Zaw Oo

In late 2020, Myanmar will hold a general election for more than a thousand seats in Union, state, and regional legislative bodies. The next year and a half will also see two high-level, conflict-laden processes capture domestic and international attention—the 21st Century Panglong peace conference and possible attempts to repatriate Rohingya refugees. This report evaluates the environment in which the peace process, Rohingya repatriation, and the election intersect and identifies opportunities for mitigating conflict in the run-up to the election.

Electoral Violence; Democracy & Governance; Peace Processes

Q&A: Libya’s Sudden New Risk of War

Q&A: Libya’s Sudden New Risk of War

Friday, April 12, 2019

By: Nathaniel L. Wilson; USIP Staff

Just as the United Nations was preparing to host a national conference in Libya this month to arrange for national elections to unify the country’s fractured governance, the faction that dominates the country’s east, the Libyan National Army, launched a military offensive last week on the capital, Tripoli. With the past week’s fighting, “the likelihood is greater than at any point since 2014 for destructive and bloody conflict” of an uncertain duration and outcome, according to Nate Wilson, who manages USIP programs in Libya. Wilson monitors Libya from neighboring Tunisia while working with Libyan officials, researchers on projects to inform international policymakers, and with local Libyan groups that work to reconcile disputes and build a foundation for national peacemaking. In response to questions, he discussed what’s at stake in the new fighting, and how the international community might respond.

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