CIGI Campus building in Waterloo, Canada. (Photographer: Joel Campbell)
CIGI Campus building in Waterloo, Canada. (Photographer: Joel Campbell)

We’re pleased to announce that the report from the full-day workshop “Towards Vertically-Integrated Peacebuilding: Bridging Top-Down and Bottom-Up Approaches” is now available on the CIGI website. The October 17 workshop – hosted by the Balsillie School of International Affairs and organized in conjunction with the 2013 annual conference of the Peace and Justice Studies Association – brought together scholars, activists and policy-makers to address both challenges and opportunities of vertical integration in peacebuilding contexts. Taking to heart the recent declaration by the Hague Institute for Global Justice[1] that, “peace will not endure unless the divide between international peacebuilders and local communities is bridged,” participants grappled with the question of how the concept of ‘integrated’ peacebuilding could be expanded to include not just international actors but also the governments and citizens of conflict-affected states.  Invited speakers at the workshop included:

  • Erin McCandless, New School for Social Research
  • Reina Neufeldt, Conrad Grebel University College
  • Anita Ernstorfer, CDA Collaborative Learning Projects
  • Michael Lund, United Nations Development Programme
  • Rob Ricigliano, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Landon Hancock, Kent State University

Highlights of the day’s deliberations included discussions on lessons learned from CDA’s Reflecting on Peace Practice project and from recent experiences from community-driven ‘zones of peace’ initiatives as well as presentations on how questions of vertical integration are currently playing out both within the UN system and within the ongoing International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding. Alongside these more empirical discussions, participants were also challenged to reflect on the value assumptions underpinning contemporary peace interventions, as well as on how systems analysis might inform more effective peacebuilding practice.

The full workshop report is available here (PDF); for more information, contact Timothy Donais.


The opinions expressed in this article/multimedia are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of CIGI or its Board of Directors.
  • Timothy Donais is an associate professor at the Balsillie School of International Affairs and Wilfrid Laurier University's Department of Global Studies. An international security expert, he is currently leading a collaborative research project on vertical integration and the United Nations peacebuilding architecture.