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In recent years, nonviolent movements have filled streets and dramatized crises to force political and social change from Tunisia and Egypt to Nepal or Liberia. Such civil resistance campaigns inevitably will need skills—of dialogue and negotiation—that are honed and taught by practitioners of peacebuilding. After decades in which the fields of nonviolent action and conflict resolution have evolved separately, new reports underscore that they need to collaborate to prevent social conflicts from turning violent and to build more inclusive societies. Join USIP and its partners on July 26 to review this research and discuss how these distinct paths for seeking sustainable peace can be better combined.

The disciplines of peacebuilding and civil resistance use distinct approaches. Practitioners of conflict resolution seek to ease crises and tension through dialogue. Yet as Dr. Martin Luther King wrote from a Birmingham jail in 1963, if those who wield power refuse to negotiate, powerless groups might first have to use nonviolent action to build crises and force such dialogue. 

The July 26 discussion will consider two reports that highlight the need for collaboration between the fields of nonviolent action and peacebuilding. In “Negotiating Civil Resistance,” scholars Anthony Wanis- St. John and Noah Rosen explore elements shared by theories of nonviolence and of negotiation. In “Powering to Peace: Civil Resistance and Peacebuilding Strategies,” scholar-activist Véronique Dudouet of the Berlin-based Berghof Foundation explores complementary approaches of civil resistance and peacebuilding for conflict transformation and the pursuit of just peace.

This event is co-sponsored by the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict, a Washington-based foundation that develops knowledge and promotes the practice of civil resistance, and by the Alliance for Peacebuilding, a network of more than 100 organizations working to resolve conflict and create sustainable peace.

Join the conversation on Twitter with #PeoplePowerPeace.

Speakers

Carla Koppell, Opening Remarks
Vice President, Applied Conflict Transformation, U.S. Institute of Peace

Anthony Wanis-St. John 
Associate Professor, School of International Service, American University

Véronique Dudouet
Program Director, Conflict Transformation Research, Berghof Foundation; Member of ICNC Academic Council

Abdallah Hendawy
Egyptian activist and political commentator; consultant, Program on Nonviolent Action, U.S. Institute of Peace

Jitman Basnet
Nepali Journalist/Lawyer and Former Prisoner of Conscience

Maria J. Stephan, Moderator
Director, Program on Nonviolent Action, U.S. Institute of Peace

Related Publications

Negotiating Civil Resistance

Negotiating Civil Resistance

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

By: Anthony Wanis-St. John ; Noah Rosen

Reviewing the literature on negotiation and civil resistance, this report examines the current divide between the two and digs deeper to identify the fundamental convergences. It builds on these findings to illustrate why negotiations and negotiation concepts are essential to the success of civil resistance campaigns. Using historical examples, it then examines the dynamics of negotiation in the context of these strategic domains. 

Nonviolent Action; Mediation, Negotiation & Dialogue

How to Foster Peace in Iraq After ISIS

How to Foster Peace in Iraq After ISIS

Monday, February 13, 2017

By: Fred Strasser

When Iraqi tribal leaders were forced to flee the city of Hawija in northern Iraq as the Islamic State seized the area in 2014, they weren’t much concerned with advancing the rule of law. But last year, as ISIS’s grip weakened and the possibility of returning to Hawija grew nearer, the leaders faced the prospect of an aftermath stained by revenge killings of collaborators and demand for “blood money” in compensation. Such tribal justice could set off new rounds of violence and instability.

Violent Extremism; Mediation, Negotiation & Dialogue; Peace Processes; Religion

View All Publications