PeaceTech Exchanges are workshops organized by the U.S. Institute of Peace to empower peacebuilders in conflict zones with low-cost, easy to use technology.

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These highly interactive conferences bring peacebuilders together with local and international technology for social good experts. Over the course of two days, participants learn about a broad array of tools to enhance their work and receive personal training for technologies they believe will assist them in their work. By the end of each event, attendees have formed teams with like-minded civil society organizations to tackle projects together, incorporating technology learned at the PTX into their work. PTXs also foster project design - guiding participants in how to define their problems, developing solutions, and creating projects that implement technologies learned at the workshop.

Supporting Local Peacebuilders

A key feature of PeaceTech Exchange is helping projects conceived during the workshops get off the ground through through a series of micro-awards, selected through a process that supports well-thought out proposals for sustainable projects. Among the projects PTXs have supported are the creation of crowdmaps to track violence against journalists, websites that host the stories of citizen journalists within communities of internally displaced people, and initiatives that track legislation and activities of local government. Through supporting peacebuilders on the ground, the PTX program has an impact long beyond the workshop event.

Success Stories

The PeaceTech Exchanges are effective, not simply because of the technologies they bring to bear, but in how those technologies enhance the work performed by participants.

One standout is Tahseen Alzrikiny, a journalist who participated in the first PeaceTech Camp. Tahseen went on to apply the skills he gained at the PeaceTech Camp to report on the farmers from his province who struggle with the extinction of their crops. Alzrikiny’s story, which was recorded, edited, and published entirely from his mobile phone, won the United Press Unlimited award for the Best Story of 2013 “which would have remained untold without mobile storytelling.”

PeaceTech Exchanges can tackle a variety of issues related to peacebuilding, including Transparency and Accountability, Open Government, Women’s or Youth Empowerment, Social Inclusion, Internet Freedom, Elections, Education, Crime and Security, Disaster Response, and many more - the possibilities are endless as the communities and hosts determine which issues PeaceTech Exchanges will address. PeaceTech Exchanges are adaptable to every country in the world, and work closely with local experts to determine the most effective technologies and organizations to bring together.

Latest Publications

China’s Engagement in Latin America: Views from the Region

China’s Engagement in Latin America: Views from the Region

Monday, August 8, 2022

By: Henry Tugendhat;  Lucy Stevenson-Yang

China’s economic and political engagement in Latin America grew significantly in the first part of the 21st century. And yet, Latin American reporting on China has not grown apace. Too few Latin American journalists cover Chinese activities in the region and even fewer foreign correspondents from Latin America report on developments in China. This knowledge gap means journalists struggle to provide proper context for major trade and investment deals and are unprepared to investigate when scandals erupt. Latin American media outlets often lack the capacity or resources to cover foreign affairs in general, much less the geo-political repercussions of China-Latin American relations.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

EconomicsGlobal Policy

One Year Later, Taliban Unable to Reverse Afghanistan’s Economic Decline

One Year Later, Taliban Unable to Reverse Afghanistan’s Economic Decline

Monday, August 8, 2022

By: William Byrd, Ph.D.

Afghanistan’s economy was already deteriorating before the Taliban takeover of the country on August 15, 2021, suffering from severe drought, the COVID-19 pandemic, declining confidence in the previous government, falling international military spending as U.S. and other foreign troops left, human and capital flight, and Taliban advances on the battlefield. Then came the abrupt cutoff of civilian and security aid (more than $8 billion per year, equivalent to 40% of Afghanistan’s GDP) immediately after the Taliban takeover. No country in the world could have absorbed such an enormous economic shock — exacerbated by sanctions, the freezing of Afghanistan’s foreign exchange reserves and foreign banks’ reluctance to do business with the country.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & GovernanceEconomics

Philippines: Seizing the Opportunity Offered by the Bangsamoro Transition Extension

Philippines: Seizing the Opportunity Offered by the Bangsamoro Transition Extension

Friday, August 5, 2022

By: Mary Ann M. Arnado

On October 28, 2021, Rodrigo Duterte, then president of the Philippines, signed into law a three-year extension of the transition period of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. The region’s first parliamentary elections are now scheduled for May 2025, alongside the national elections. In 2021, the Mindanao Peoples Caucus (MPC) actively campaigned for the extension of the transition period to provide more time for the Bangsamoro Transition Authority and the Philippine government to fully implement and deliver the commitments they made in the 2014 peace agreement between the national government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. The agreement grants greater political autonomy to the southern Mindanao region.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Peace Processes

How Should the U.S. Respond to China’s ‘Global Security Initiative?’

How Should the U.S. Respond to China’s ‘Global Security Initiative?’

Thursday, August 4, 2022

By: Carla Freeman, Ph.D.;  Alex Stephenson

After Russia invaded Ukraine, some hoped that China would use its “no limits” partnership with Moscow and multifaceted relationship with Kyiv to help prevent the conflict from escalating. The European Union’s foreign policy chief pointed to China as the obvious mediator and some among China’s policy elite also called publicly on their government to play a proactive role in helping to resolve the war. One prominent American intellectual urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to seize his “Teddy Roosevelt Moment,” referring to Roosevelt’s Nobel Peace Prize winning mediation of the 1905 Russia-Japan war. For its part, Beijing indicated it was prepared to help mediate but it would do so “in its own way.”

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global Policy

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