At their best, national dialogues can open the door to resolving long-standing drivers of conflict and make political transitions more inclusive. However, many national dialogues fail to live up to this potential — often stifled by political complexities or other challenges along the way. The impact of a national dialogue is also not easy to assess immediately after its conclusion, as implementation of a dialogue’s resolutions is a complex and time-consuming endeavor.

On June 24, USIP and Peace Appeal hosted two panel discussions with the authors of the Institute’s recent report, “National Dialogues in Peacebuilding and Transitions: Creativity and Adaptive Thinking.” The conversations will assess the impacts of six national dialogues in Africa and the Middle East several years after the conclusion of these processes. 

The first panel focused on Lebanon, Senegal and Tunisia and examined inclusivity and representation in national dialogues in these countries. The second panel discussed national dialogues in Central African Republic, Kenya and Yemen and reflected on international involvement in these processes. Both panels drew lessons for practitioners and policymakers who are contemplating future national dialogues. 

Continue the conversation on Twitter with #NationalDialogues.


Elizabeth Murray, moderator
Senior Program Officer, Africa, U.S. Institute of Peace 

Elie Abouaoun
Director, Middle East and North Africa Programs, U.S. Institute of Peace

Penda Ba 
Associate Professor, Gaston Berger University

Derek Brown 
Co-Executive Director, Peace Appeal Foundation

Daniel Brumberg 
Professor and Director, Democracy and Governance Studies, Georgetown University 

Erica Gaston
Fellow, Global Public Policy Institute 

Jimmy Ochieng
Consultant, HD Centre

Rachel Sullivan 
Program Specialist, Africa, U.S. Institute of Peace

Susan Stigant, moderator
Director, Africa Programs, U.S. Institute of Peace

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