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

Testimonials

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

Partners

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

Partners

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.

Latest Publications

After Beirut Blast, What’s Next for Lebanon’s Broken Political System?

After Beirut Blast, What’s Next for Lebanon’s Broken Political System?

Friday, August 7, 2020

By: Dr. Elie Abouaoun; Mona Yacoubian

A massive explosion ripped through the Port of Beirut on Tuesday, sending shockwaves through the Lebanese capital, killing over one hundred and injuring thousands. This comes with Lebanon already on the brink of economic collapse, struggling to address a COVID outbreak, and as the trust gap between citizens and the state is wider than ever. Although in the immediate aftermath of the explosion some suggested Lebanon had been attacked, the cause of the explosion is likely much more banal: government negligence resulted in thousands of pounds of explosive chemical material to be improperly stored in the port for years. USIP’s Elie Abouaoun and Mona Yacoubian examine what this demonstrates about the already beleaguered Lebanese government, the long-term implications for the country, and how the international community has responded so far.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & Governance

Disengagement and Reconciliation in Conflict-Affected Settings

Disengagement and Reconciliation in Conflict-Affected Settings

Friday, August 7, 2020

By: Leanne Erdberg Steadman

Even in brutal and desperate conflict settings, it is possible for people to abandon violence and leave violent groups. Peacebuilders know this well—yet terrorism and counterterrorism policies and practices have often neglected practical ways to address participants in violent extremism and failed to provide them opportunities to reject violence. This report examines how peacebuilding tools can help transform the individual attitudes, group relationships, and social ecosystems and structures needed to facilitate the effective disengagement and reconciliation of former members of violent extremist groups.

Type: Special Report

Violent Extremism

The Dangers of Myanmar’s Ungoverned Casino Cities

The Dangers of Myanmar’s Ungoverned Casino Cities

Thursday, August 6, 2020

By: Jason Tower; Priscilla A. Clapp

As a struggling, incomplete democracy, Myanmar and its elected leaders face challenges that would confound any country. The best-known involve the military’s uneven loosening of a 50-year dictatorship; ethnic tensions and armed conflicts; the lack of a common national identity; entrenched poverty; and the complications of borders with five nations, including China. Less well known is an emerging threat that touches each of these vital concerns. Over the past three years, transnational networks with links to organized crime have partnered with local armed groups, carving out autonomous enclaves and building so-called “smart cities” to tap into the huge, but illegal, Chinese online gambling market. Myanmar’s leaders at every level and in every sector should pay serious attention to the alarming national implications of these developments.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Economics & Environment; Democracy & Governance

Coronavirus Throws Another Challenge at Syria’s Doctors

Coronavirus Throws Another Challenge at Syria’s Doctors

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

By: Anthony Navone

As COVID starts to surge in Syria, the pandemic poses extraordinary challenges in one of the world’s most complex conflict zones. Nearly a decade of war has left Syria’s health care system in shambles. With supplies and trained personnel scarce, medical providers have struggled to meet the needs of millions of displaced Syrians. Meanwhile, medical workers have not been spared from the violence—despite international condemnation, health care facilities have been targeted by military strikes over 500 times since 2011.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global Health

View All Publications