Conflict Studies Student Projects
We are celebrating our Conflict Studies majors and their work.
Senior Essays in Conflict Studies
December 12, 2013
Harrison Hall 101
I. Preventing Conflict and Conflict Dynamics
The Responsibility to Protect: Tools for Conflict Prevention
Conflict prevention is the ugly duckling of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) norm that has captivated the international community. Prevention has been neglected
in favor of a focus on reaction and rebuilding, Intrastate conflicts often lead to war, which may become sites of crimes associated with R2P: genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing. This paper examines top-‐ down and bottom-‐up approaches to conflict prevention, arguing for approaches that unite the two.
Representation vs. Reality: The Media’s Effects on Group Identities
As seen in such cases as South Africa and Côte d’Ivoire, the presence of multiple identities in society constitutes a condition that may give rise to conflict. Identities may become solidified through a number of means, one of which is the representation of groups in the media. Representation can also cause the polarization of group identity, wherein greater disparity between groups is created by emphasizing their differences. This paper examines the role that media play in the polarization of groups in a civil conflict, with specific attention paid to the role of governmental control and regulation of the media.
Haiti and the Liberal Peace
This paper offers a critical assessment of international peacekeeping efforts in Haiti following the 1991 election of Jean-‐Bertrand Aristide. The author’s analysis of the work of the United Nations suggests that a liberal peace strategy was adopted and that its failure to stabilize and uplift the Haitian people is a strong indicator that the international liberal peace project is unsuited to effective conflict transformation.
Limitations and Deficiencies of the Good Friday Agreement
The 1998 Good Friday Agreement (GFA) put a formal end to civil war in Northern Ireland. However, the post-‐agreement period has witnessed lingering violence and atrocity. Clearly, present conditions are far from a perfect, positive peace. This paper explores the limitations and deficiencies of the GFA in order to advance the proposition that including bottom-‐up solutions to the Northern Ireland peace process would have been more effective in ending the violence between those divided communities.
Generating a Peace Accord: The Good Friday Agreement
The Good Friday Agreement (GFA) offers an excellent case study for examining how mediation can offer creative solutions to seemingly intractable conflicts. This project evaluates the success of mediation processes used for the development of the GFA in Northern Ireland. The author argues that the process delivered appropriate content suitable for addressing the root causes of the conflict. Doing so will allow future peace builders to determine how these processes can be further improved in Northern Ireland and anyplace where mediation is being used to develop peace agreements.
The Effectiveness of Disarmament, Demobilization, and
Reintegration Programs for Female ex-‐Child Combatants
Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration is an ongoing process in many post conflict countries. However, these programs tend to have significantly lower rates of female ex- combatant involvement than their participation in war would predict. In order to increase the participation of females in these programs, it is necessary to examine the pros and cons of these processes and explore ways to make these programs more inclusive of women.
The Necessity of Education in Peacebuilding: Lessons from History Curriculum Development in Post-‐Genocide Rwanda
The international community has become increasingly involved in working to resolve conflict and build sustainable peace following intrastate conflict. These peacebuilding initiatives are complicated and complex affairs. One component that seems especially important to successful peacebuilding is education. A significant literature is now available that examines how education might both encourage and discourage sustainable peace. One important component of rebuilding education is developing history curricula that acknowledge the past without reaffirming hostilities and group animosity. How history is taught will vary culturally and must be specific to each conflict. Case studies, such as Rwanda, can provide insight into the struggles of creating a history curriculum and incorporating education into peace building