Comparing Institutions for Sustainable Peace

The Challenges of Security and Justice in Postwar Societies
GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies

SOAS School of Oriental and African Studies

After wars have formally ended and ex-combatants have demobilised, the challenges of establishing social orders with a minimum of security and justice remain. Researchers and policy makers broadly agree on the importance of institutional arrangements to maintain peace in post-war and/or divided societies and that a functioning security and justice sector is necessary for good governance and long-term stability. It is less clear, however, exactly how this can be accomplished: are there global templates or will only local solutions succeed? Should international actors facilitate large-scale post-war programmes or are community-based approaches of peacebuilding more likely to lead to conflict transformation? Can successful institutional designs travel from one context to another?

At times, the comparison of post-conflict societies is difficult, especially the conceptualisation and operationalisation of key terms such as violence, security, justice, and peace across different contexts and according to varying theoretical and normative frameworks. Yet, when discussing these questions, crosscountry or cross-regional comparisons represent important tools, providing valuable insights into dealing with challenges of post-conflict reconstruction and violence control. This workshop aims to further the debate on conditions of sustainable peace in comparative research, focusing on institutions designed to promote security and justice in different countries and regions across the globe.

09:30 Welcome words – Nadine Ansorg and Phil Clark

09:45 to 11:00 First Panel – Potentials and pitfalls of comparative studies

Chair: Phil Clark

Sabine Kurtenbach, GIGA Hamburg: Peace, violence and security – The challenges of comparing complex phenomena

Jacob Summer, Uppsala University: Where to Begin? A Comparative Study and discussion of Top-Down vs. Bottom-Up Perspectives in Media Capacity Design in Post-Conflict Liberia and South Africa

Senija Causevic, SOAS: Structural Violence and Heritage codification: Normalisation of Social Relationships in Bosnia and Herzegovina

11:15 to 12:45 Second Panel – Transitional justice and institution-building

Chair: Nadine Ansorg

Stefan Wolff and Christalla Yakinthou, University of Birmingham: Designing robust and just political settlements: the relationship between, and effects of, transitional justice and power sharing

Elisabeth Bunselmeyer, GIGA Hamburg: Transitional Justice and Institution-Building in Postwar Societies. An analytical framework

Phil Clark, SOAS: Villagers Dealing with Village-Level Violence: Comparing Community-Based Transitional Justice Processes in the African Great Lakes

13:45 to 15:15 Third Panel – Police reform and security governance

Chair: Fiona Adamson

Franzisca Zanker, GIGA Hamburg: Mixed Messages: Efforts at Community Policing in Post-War Liberia

Nadine Ansorg, Felix Haaß, and Julia Strasheim, GIGA Hamburg: Characteristics of Intrastate War and Provisions of Post-War Policing in Peace Agreements

Jana Krause, King’s College London: Militia Leaders into ‚Peace Activists’: Networks of Violence and Informal Security Governance after Communal War in Indonesia (Ambon) and Nigeria (Jos)

15:30 to 16:45 Fourth Panel – The role of international actors

Chair: Sabine Kurtenbach

Sebastian Ziaja, University of Essex: Fuel or water to the fire? Democracy aid and political instability in Africa, 1990-2009

Dan Plesch, SOAS: The creation of sustainable peace by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA), and the United Nations War Crimes Commission

public event
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