WASHINGTON, D.C. — Alliance for Peacebuilding is a global network of more than 80 conflict resolution and peace-focused organizations and individuals who work to promote “sustainable peace and security worldwide.”
Since its foundation in 1999, the Alliance for Peacebuilding has expanded significantly with network members in over 150 countries around the world.
Peacebuilding, as defined by the network, aims to “manage, mitigate, resolve, and transform central aspects of conflict through official diplomacy, civil society peace processes, and informal dialogues, negotiations, and mediations. Peacebuilding addresses root causes of violence and fosters reconciliation to prevent the return of instability and violence.”
Alliance for Peacebuilding works to achieve these goals by operating a variety of different programs, which include initiatives that focus on bolstering human security, engaging with policymakers, examining conflict prevention, mapping and evaluating peacebuilding and even shifting the way the world thinks about peace.
For example, one of the organization’s programs works directly with officials in the U.S. government “to help policymakers understand what the world looks like through a peacebuilding lens and apply those approaches to foreign policy.”
In a word where military action is often the first response to global conflict, the Alliance for Peacebuilding is working to advocate for the power of peace and diplomatic resolutions. And, they’re receiving support from some interesting sources.
According to a poll run by the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition of U.S. military officers, “84 percent of officers say that strengthening non-military tools such as diplomacy and development efforts should be at least equal to strengthening military efforts when it comes to improving America’s ability to address threats to our national security.”
The work that the Alliance for Peacebuilding is doing within the U.S. government is helping to demonstrate this need to government officials.
When the network’s methods are questioned, or when they are approached with doubt about the effectiveness of peacebuilding strategies, their response is logical and persuasive: “The world will probably never find a cure for violence, but the peacebuilding field is making meaningful progress with minimal resources,” and their efforts around the world have shown definitive progress.
Peacebuilding and diplomacy have central roles in the United States ‘3Ds’ policy of Defense, Development and Diplomacy, described as “the three pillars that provide the foundation for promoting and protecting U.S. natural security interests abroad.”
While the Alliance for Peacebuilding’s work is mostly restricted to supporting the diplomacy sector, it is also important to recognize the role that poverty alleviation, or development, plays in conflict prevention. When communities are struggling to survive, they often become unstable, which can and has created violent conflict in the past.
Peacebuilding, conflict prevention and diplomacy tactics like the ones Alliance for Peacebuilding promote around the world, in addition to poverty reduction strategies, are helping to reduce global conflict and make the world a safer and more peaceful place for all of its inhabitants.
– Emily Jablonski