Fri, Sep 30, 2011
Global Nonviolent Action Database
George Lakey and student researchers from Swarthmore College have now launched the Global Nonviolent Action Database. The creative-commons-licensed database is publicly searchable online. The research team has cataloged hundreds of nonviolent campaigns from around the world and across history going back as far as the 12th century BCE. The focus is on completed campaigns rather than ongoing ones, and a great deal of thought has been put into categorizing the cases so that comparative research can be conducted. Issue clusters include campaigns struggling about democracy, economic justice, environment, human rights, national/ethnic identity and peace and coding includes information on location, start year, tactics used, and outcomes. The 198 different tactics that have been coded for correlate with Gene Sharp’s methods of nonviolent resistance. The outcomes scores provided are based on the stated goals of the protagonist with scores provided in three areas: goal attainment, survival and growth. Also included is a listing of primary actors involved in each campaign coded into three groups: leaders, partners and allies. The advanced search features make it easy to dig down into the database on these various criteria. In addition to the database fields for each case, a narrative is provided describing the struggle as an unfolding story.
You can browse for waves of campaigns wherein a series of campaigns were part of a larger ongoing struggle. Currently included waves are:
African Democracy Campaigns (early 1990s) (5 cases)
Arab Awakening (2011) (4 cases)
Asian Democracy Campaigns (1980s) (7 cases)
Colour Revolutions (2000s) (6 cases)
Soviet Bloc Independence Campaigns (1989-) (11 cases)
U.S. Civil Rights Movement (27 cases)
This impressive service learning project has resulted in a great and enduring contribution to the field. Way to go team!
Sat, Sep 24, 2011
Young Mediators Initiative launched
A new network is being launched at youngmediator.org to help newer mediators find their way into the field. “It is intended as a platform where young mediators can contact each other, share knowledge, get in touch with organizations and network with competent mediators to gain experience through shadowing, assistantships, internships, co-mediations and participate in mentoring programs.” An international team is coordinating the site which officially launched on September 21, the international day of peace.
One of the primary features is a directory of young mediators and older experienced mentors that is being built up now. You can see the criteria information collected from applicants here. Keep an eye on the site as it remains a work in progress.
Sun, Sep 11, 2011
The Buffalo War - In Their ShoesIn 2001 PBS broadcast a documentary entitled The Buffalo War that documents an environmental conflict involving America's last wild bison herd. The conflict involves Native Americans, government officials and environmental activists disputing over the yearly killing of bison that stray from Yellowstone National Park in winter. At the time of the film, these bison were routinely rounded up and sent to slaughter by agents of Montana's Department of Livestock. The primary concern was that the migrating animals would transmit a disease known as brucellosis to cattle.
The film follows a group of Lakota Sioux Indians who engage in a 500-mile spiritual march across Montana to call attention to the problem and a group of environmentalists who use civil disobedience to try to prevent the bison roundup. Also featured are the ranchers who have property surrounding Yellowstone and who are directly impacted by the bison migration.
Of particular interest to conflict studies folks is the companion site produced by PBS that explains the issues in the film. They have created a section called In Their Shoes that takes you through the materials from the point of view of the three different primary parties. Nicely done.
The film is available from Bullfrog Films or can be watched in segments via YouTube.
Fri, Sep 09, 2011
2011-2012 CRE Activity Calendar now available
I am very pleased to announce that the 3rd Edition of the Conflict Resolution Education Activity Calendar is now available. Thanks and congratulations goes out to our talented volunteer editorial team from MappingChange.com and the Conflict Resolution Program at the University of Delaware. You can view the 2011-2012 calendar online or grab a smartboard-friendly pdf copy with active weblinks.
Hard copies can be ordered from the Association for Conflict Resolution. Individuals and schools and youth serving organizations qualify to receive free calendars (1 per individual or 5-pack for educational orgs) and everyone is invited to sponsor the distribution of calendars by donating $15 for a 5-pack to be sent to yourself or a deserving organization. Help “Spread the CREd” today!
Mon, Sep 05, 2011
International Council on Human Rights Policy working papers
The International Council on Human Rights Policy (ICHRP) is a “forum for applied research, reflection and forward thinking, grappling with the challenge of translating universal human rights principles into policy realities.” Human Rights is at the root of much social conflict and thinking about and developing principles that can apply across a number of different settings makes good sense. Along these line, a number of ICHRP reports address issues that conflict resolution practitioners may be interested in.
The papers that caught my attention include:
- Navigating the Dataverse: Privacy, Technology, Human Rights: A Discussion Paper (pdf)
- Report: Negotiating Justice? Human Rights and Peace Agreements (pdf) - more about this project
- Report: When Legal Worlds Overlap: Human Rights, State and Non-State Law (pdf) - more about this project
- Conflict, Media and Human Rights in South Asia (pdf) - more on this topic
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