Sun, Feb 24, 2008
Democratic Dialogue - A Handbook for Practitioners
The United Nations Development Programme Crisis Prevention and Recovery group has published Democratic Dialogue - A Handbook for Practitioners. This 2007 publication is a well-developed 262-page collection of information and advice from experienced dialogue practitioners, and best of all, it is available at no cost. The handbook, written by Bettye Pruitt and Philip Thomas, includes numerous international examples to illustrate key ideas. Here’s the description:
The Handbook on Democratic Dialogue has been a joint effort of The Canadian International Development Association (CIDA), International IDEA, the Organization of American States (OAS) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), receiving valuable input from a wider network of organizations. This Handbook has been designed to reflect current practice in the field of dialogue and to draw on concrete experiences of practitioners in various regions and of various actors involved in these processes. It seeks to consolidate emerging learning – both in terms of the conceptual framework supporting dialogue, and practical experiences in the design, facilitation and assessment of such processes on the ground. It also offers a comprehensive mapping of the process tools that can be used to support dialogue initiatives, thereby expanding the toolbox currently available to practitioners.
The Handbook on Democratic Dialogue is available here as a pdf.
Sat, Feb 23, 2008
Virtual Conflict Resolution: Turning Swords Into Plowshares
The 2007-08 Digital Media and Learning Competition, administered by HASTAC and supported by the MacArthur Foundation, just announced the award-winning projects. From a field of over 1,000 applications, seven projects won Innovation awards of $100,000 or $238,000. There is a great deal of creativity demonstrated in these projects that readers of this blog may appreciate. Of particular interest is the award going to an initiative called Virtual Conflict Resolution: Turning Swords to Plowshares. This project is developing a digital humanitarian assistance game that creates a learning environment for young people studying public policy and international relations. The game will be developed by repurposing an existing military simulation platform (America’s Army) into a tool for humanitarian training. Learning within the game will focus on leadership skills, cultural awareness, problem solving, and adaptive thinking—all of which are necessary to coordinate international humanitarian assistance for natural disaster relief. We’ll want to keep an eye on their progress.
Mon, Feb 18, 2008
PEACE THE WORLD (together) - Stanford Peace Innovation Prize video contest
The Peace Technologies lab at Stanford University is launching their first peace “experiment.” By encouraging a number of diverse, rapid, measurable, peace interventions that call for the use of information technology to promote peace, they hope to learn about the effectiveness of different technologies - and approaches - in creating a more peaceful world.
PEACE THE WORLD (together)
The Challenge: Share a peace-related video with people in as many countries as possible. The video that garners the most comments from around the world will win the Stanford Peace Innovation Prize and $250. Get all the details here.
A sample short video has been posted to YouTube wherein toys stage a border war to defend what they believe to be their territory - but ultimately reconcile the conflict after the borders disappear.
Sun, Feb 17, 2008
Peace Quotes Collection
The World Peace Through Technology organization based out of San Francisco has gathered an impressive collection of quotes on the importance of peace and conflict resolution, with some extra emphasis placed on the important role to be played by music. Their website as a whole explores the role of benevolent technology. As explained on the site “World Peace through Technology believes that there are many technologies being developed that can help foster peace between people and peace with our world’s environment.”
Thu, Feb 14, 2008
Social Emotional Learning (and CR) Videos at Edutopia.org
The George Lucas Educational Foundation celebrates and encourages innovation in schools. Using the Edutopia.org website and other media outlets the Foundation has been documenting, disseminating, and advocating for exemplary programs in K-12 public schools to help innovative practices spread nationwide.
Readers of this blog will probably appreciate the videos exploring Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and Conflict Resolution programs in schools. You can browse the current collection using this link to videos on Emotional Intelligence.
Sat, Feb 09, 2008
Farmingville - Exploring Community Conflicts Over Day Laborers
The 2004 P.O.V. film Farmingville provides a wonderful window into community conflict over issues involving immigration and inexpensive labor. As explained on the Active Voice site using this film,
“In 2001, the shocking hate-based attempted murders of two Mexican day laborers, smack in the middle of Long Island, NY, catapulted the town of Farmingville into national headlines. For nearly a year, filmmakers Carlos Sandoval and Catherine Tambini lived and worked in Farmingville in order to capture the turmoil on the new front line in the border wars: suburbia. Blending the stories of town leaders, residents, day laborers and activists on all sides of the debate, Farmingville is the first documentary to show how our laws and infrastructure are at odds with our increasingly globalized economy.”
Active Voice has created something called the Farmingville Campaign: Bridge-building resources for communities with day laborers that includes a Resource Guide, a Community Discussion Guide, and transcripts from a Brookings Institute seminar on the film and the conflict.
Also of interest are the educator materials provided by PBS in support of the film (available via NetFlix). This includes a classroom module that engages groups of students in a townhall debate process known as the “Farmingville” Lesson Plan: Debate with a Twist: A Town Hall Look at Immigrant Labor and Public Policy. The lesson plan is available as a pdf.
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