Given religion’s influence on conflict dynamics around the world, it is critical that practitioners and policymakers understand and partner with religious leaders and people of faith to build peace. For more than 25 years, the U.S. Institute of Peace has worked on the role of religion in violence and peace, advancing cutting-edge research and policy, and developing effective strategies to engage religious actors, institutions and ideas across traditions in support of peace. From enhancing the peacemaking capacities of individuals and faith-based organizations to fostering meaningful dialogue within and across faiths, USIP works with local partners to promote inclusive religious peacebuilding.

Featured Publications

Top Civic Leaders Aid Nigerian Fight to Curb Extremism

Top Civic Leaders Aid Nigerian Fight to Curb Extremism

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

By: Fred Strasser

Nigeria’s Roman Catholic cardinal urges his flock to embrace diversity. The spiritual leader of the country’s Muslims leads efforts to prevent radicalization and condemns Boko Haram. A former United Nations envoy advocates for professionalism among civil servants. A retired army chief of staff presses for the government to reach out more to alienated groups. These leaders and seven other prominent figures form a new high-level advisory group helping northern Nigeria’s powerful state governors address the social, religious and political forces that fuel extremist violence.

Fragility and Resilience; Violent Extremism; Religion; Mediation, Negotiation & Dialogue

Cautious Optimism on Burma’s Arduous Path to Peace

Cautious Optimism on Burma’s Arduous Path to Peace

Monday, March 20, 2017

By: USIP Staff

A year after Burma’s pro-democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, took office, her country’s transition from military rule toward democracy and peace has made progress—but continued fighting underscores the need for faster progress, said diplomats, scholars and other analysts who convened at USIP on March 16.

Peace Processes; Religion

Libya’s Religious Sector and Peacebuilding Efforts

Libya’s Religious Sector and Peacebuilding Efforts

Thursday, March 16, 2017

By: Palwasha L. Kakar; Zahra Langhi

Derived from two surveys conducted in Libya in 2014 and 2016, this report strives to heighten understanding of the country’s religious sector and its impact on governance and society. The findings—which are bolstered by the local knowledge of Libyan researchers—map the major religious trends, institutions, and actors in the country to describe how Libyans perceive the contribution of the religious sector to building peace and fostering justice and democracy.

Religion; Democracy & Governance; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

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Current Projects

USIP Youth Leaders’ Exchange with the Dalai Lama

USIP Youth Leaders’ Exchange with the Dalai Lama

The U.S. Institute of Peace and His Holiness the Dalai Lama have joined to strengthen the abilities of youth leaders working to build peace in the world’s most violent regions. USIP and the Dalai Lama hosted a dialogue in May 2016 with 28 such peacebuilders drawn from networks of the Institute and its partners in 13 countries across Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Many of these countries face the world’s deadliest wars, as well as campaigns by extremist groups to incite youth to violence. T...

Religion; Youth

USIP Local Funding for Peace in Pakistan

USIP Local Funding for Peace in Pakistan

The U.S. Institute of Peace supports programs and research that contribute to the mission of promoting enduring peace in South Asia. The institute provides analysis, capacity development and resources to individuals and institutions working to prevent, mitigate, and resolve violent conflict. In Pakistan, USIP awards funding in three categories, ranging from projects that test new, experimental ideas to supporting local and international organizations on policy relevant research.

Economics & Environment; Education & Training; Gender; Religion; Youth

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