Stimson’s Civilians in Conflict project and Saferworld, an
international organization focused on conflict resolution and peacebuilding,
held a joint event in Washington to engage the policy community, thought leaders
and practitioners working in conflict affected and fragile states on how to
engage with communities and integrate their perspectives and priorities in
security-related decision-making at the local and the global levels. The event
showcased briefings and reports on community security recently released by both
Saferworld and the Stimson Center.
The event, ‘Community
Security and Protection from Deliberate Violence: Why external
strategies and interventions must prioritize community voices,’ focused on
why successful strategies to build security and provide protection hinge on the
safe and effective engagement with conflict-affected communities in the design
and provision of both strategy and programs. The speakers, including Alison
Giffen, director of the Civilians in Conflict project, Karen Finkenbinder of
the Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute, and David Alpher of
Saferworld, drew policy recommendations from practical examples in contexts as
diverse as South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Syria, UN
peacekeeping operations and US community policing. The presentations and the
discussion that followed drew connections from policy formulation to planning
and implementation. While the overall theme of the event was on the need
for increased community engagement and the argument for policy design, rich
discussion in the question-and-answer period following the presentations
focused on how to take those arguments from policy to practice and ensure
practical and effective implementation.
More than 30 people attended the
event from a wide range of universities, CSOs, US government offices and
Washington think tanks. This was the first major event involving Saferworld’s
Washington office, which opened in April.
For more information please contact Aditi Gorur at [email protected].