Pre-Dublin: CRS at 2016 University of Bradford Symposium

Posted by: Tamsin Tags: There is no tags | Categories: Current News


On the eve of the Dublin 2016 CRS conference hosted by the Irish School of Ecumenics, CRS representatives participated in the University of Bradford Peace Studies Symposium celebrating one hundred years since the birth of Mediator and Peace Studies founder Adam Curle. This was follow-up to the 2015 Theory/Practice workshop at the University of Kent undertaken in cooperation with the National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (NCPACS), University of Otago, New Zealand. CRS was joined by Goran Bozicevic, co-founder and current director of the Miramida Centre, Regional Peacebuilding Exchange in Groznjan-Grisignana (Istria, Croatia) and co-founder associate of the Centre for Peace Studies in Zagreb. . In a session entitled ‘From Biafra to Osijek: Curlian Mediation Development’ they traced the work of Adam Curle from his track one intermediary engagement in the 1967-1970 Biafran war, to his subsequent writing and involvement in community-based, grassroots transformative mobilization during the dissolution civil war of former Yugoslavia, particularly in Osijek, Croatia. The role of research findings, the need for documentation and data were highlighted, with an invitation to participants to flag their own current key questions or burning issues in this regard. Highlighted points included:

  • Religion, Reconciliation and active peace building
  • Rescuing the Pursuit of Knowledge in the Academy (amid growing constraints)
  • Cross-generational projects for resolution of conflict
  • Innovation in cross-sectoral mediation, bridging commercial and political approaches
  • Building social movements and linkages through action research
  • Tensions between Peace and Justice, and in a similar vein: Peace Making, Peace Building and Transitional Justice Issues

Discussion touched on the need of practitioners themselves for good research practice, and the experience of those who are ‘researched’ when working and experiencing their own real time conflict contexts. Prof. Kevin Clements of the NCPACS Otago also addressed the symposium plenary (over two hundred participants) in the opening ceremony, via video from New Zealand.  Kevin, who had known and worked with Adam Curle, was Visiting Resident Scholar at the Conflict Analysis Research Centre (CARC) University of Kent 2015/2016. He was closely involved in the development of the CRS session.

Judith Large

John Paul Lederach – How Does Humanity Unite

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John Paul Lederach won the book of the year award at our Coventry Conference in 2012 for his book When Blood and Bones Cry Out: Journeys in the Soundscapes of Healing and Reconciliation. He is one of the main innovators in connecting theory and practice in peacebuilding, a theme which is highly relevant to CRS members.

His most recent piece, How Does Humanity Unite, identifies four lessons on what we have learned as conflict resolvers/peacebuilders in responding to extreme violence of the kinds evident in recent incidents globally.

The blog can be accessed here:

This post first appeared on Humanity United’s blog on July 18, 2016.

2016 Conflict Research Society Book of the Year Prize

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The Conflict Research Society congratulates Dr. Kristin Bakke on winning the 2016 Conflict Research Society Book of the Year Prize for Decentralization and Intrastate Struggles: Chechnya, Punjab and Quebec published by Cambridge University Press (2015).

The prize honours research on conflict and peace that is contemporary, exceptional, and world leading, and which provides an invaluable contribution to the literature on conflict and peace.

The prize committee received over 50 nominations from conflict/peace researchers, institutions, practitioners and publishers. The committee chose the winning title out of 4 short-listed books based on criteria such as how well the book demonstrates a significant contribution to conflict/peace studies, impact factor, methodological rigour, robustness and credibility of the findings, the extent to which it is interdisciplinary, quality of writing and presentation. The committee also prioritized first time book authors.

The prize committee noted that Decentralization and Intrastate Struggles is “an excellent critical study of decentralisation as a response to secessionist conflicts.” It is an impressive first book from “an academic who has very quickly been established as a leading researcher in conflict studies.” Committee members praised the book for its “clear thesis that significantly adds to the theoretical and empirical debates on conflict management.” In particular, the committee concentrated on the extent which it uses robust methods to contribute to existing debates: “The study uses new data, new quantitative analysis and presents original case studies done on the basis of a mass of interviewing and travel to the regions concerned (except Chechnya). It is a very thorough-going piece of original research.”

This year’s prize committee had to choose out of 4 very good books. Further congratulations are extended to the following running up titles (in no particular order):

Wallensteen, Peter. (2015) Quality Peace: Peacebuilding, Victory and World Order. Oxford: Oxford University Press

Mitchell, Christopher (2014) The Nature of Intractable Conflict: Resolution in the 21st Century. London: Palgrave Macmillan

Bar-Tal, Daniel (2015) (first published 2013) Intractable Conflicts: Socio-Psychological Foundations and Dynamics. Cambridge: Cambridge University.

The prize winner (Dr. Kristin Bakke) is invited to the CRS annual conference to receive their prize and to provide a short presentation on their work at the CRS conference at Trinity College, Dublin, September, 2016.

For more information on the CRS Book of the Year Prize please see

Oxpeace conference, studying peace and studying conflict: complementary or competing paradigms?

Posted by: Charly Anders Tags: There is no tags | Categories: Current News


Professor Hugh Miall (Chair of the CRS) attended the eighth conference of OxPeace, the Oxford Network of Peace Studies, in St John’s College, Oxford on Saturday 14 May. Kristin Bakke, CRS Council member, was among the presenters. The conference highlighted the work on peacebuilding of the strong group of conflict researchers now at Oxford, including Richard Caplan, Keith Krause, John Gledhill, and Annette Idler, winner of last year’s CRS Cedric Smith Prize. Speakers included Peter Wallensteen (Uppsala), Roger Mac Ginty (Manchester), David Keen (LSE), Denisa Kostovicova (LSE), and others. The chair was Liz Carmichael (Oxford) of OxPeace.

Podcasts of the presentations will be made available at the Oxpeace site, where podcasts of previous conferences can also be found: For the programme of this year’s conference, see here.

OxPeace is seeking £4m to endow a Chair in Peace Studies, with the University’s blessing . Patrons of the appeal include President Jimmy Carter, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Archbishop Justin Welby and Chancellor of Oxford Chris Patten. Any billionaires reading this please contact Liz Carmichael. You can read the Oxpeace proposal here.

Hugh Miall

CRS | Dr Kathleen Cunningham Wins CRS 2015 Book Of The Year

Dr Kathleen Cunningham Wins CRS 2015 Book Of The Year

Posted by: Charly Anders Tags: There is no tags | Categories: Current News


Congratulations to Dr. Kathleen Cunningham for winning the 2015 CRS Book Prize for her new book Inside the Politics of Self-Determination published by Oxford University Press.

The judges on the CRS book prize panel praised Dr. Cunningham’s book for “tackling a very important topic, making a clear contribution to the literature on self-determination whilst offering significant short-term and long-term policy implications.” They also noted the significance of “developing a new database of self-determination groups” as well as the methodological rigour applied in order to “examine how intra-party or factional divisions on the insurgents’ side and on the government side affect the chances of accommodations and civil war.” The judges all agreed that this was a very impressive monograph for a first-time book author consistent with the CRS and Richardson tradition.

Dr Cunningham will be collecting the prize, and offering one of the keynote talks at the 2015 CRS conference in Kent, UK this September.

Congratulations are also extended to those short-listed from a list of 40 excellent monographs, which the judges also praised for their originality, methodological rigour, and academic and policy contribution:

Autesserre, Séverine. Peaceland: Conflict Resolution and the Everyday Politics of International Intervention. Cambridge University Press, 2014.

Colaresi, Michael P. Democracy Declassified: The Secrecy Dilemma in National Security. Oxford University Press, 2014.

Staniland, Paul. Networks of Rebellion: Explaining Insurgent Cohesion and Collapse. Cornell University Press, 2014.

CRS | CRS Members Launch Their Latest Book

CRS Members Launch Their Latest Book

Posted by: Charly Anders Tags: There is no tags | Categories: Current News


Conflict Research Society members Hugh Miall, Tom Woodhouse, Oliver Ramsbotham release their latest book along with Christopher Mitchell – The Contemporary Conflict Resolution Reader.

CRS | CRS Members Launch Their Latest BookThese esteemed professors have previously co-authored three editions of Contemporary Conflict Resolution, with a fourth edition due later this year. The forthcoming edition will tackle contemporary conflict theories and recent issues including how current theories relate to new groups such as ISIS.

This reader complements these four book editions above assessing both classical and contemporary works on various streams of conflict and peace research.

The book launch was hosted by the Conflict Analysis Research Centre (CARC) at the University of Kent. This was followed by a lively roundtable discussion with CARC members and fellow students. The panel included the Philip Cunliffe as chair, the authors, Yeshim Harris, Director of Engi, and Judith Large, a senior fellow at CARC.