Establishment of a Network of Foundations and Research Institutions for the Promotion of a Culture of Peace in Africa
an article by Enzo Fazzino, Africa Department, UNESCO
At the initiative of the UNESCO and the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for the research of peace, representatives of 26 foundations and African peace research institutes met on September 20th and 21st, 2013, at the African Union Headquarters, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. These organizations, whose Headquarters are located in more than 20 African countries, decided the establishment of a network in order to coordinate their respective operations and to implement joint projects.
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The meeting, organized by the UNESCO, the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for Peace Research and the African Union Commission, was held on the occasion of the International Day of Peace (21st September). It is part of the follow-up action of the Pan-African Forum on the “Sources and Resources for a culture of peace” held in Luanda (Angola), in March 2013. This Forum resulted in the adoption of an Action Plan for a Culture of Peace in Africa and the launch of a continental and sustainable Movement for a culture of peace and to the kickstarting of awareness and mobilization campaigns at national level under the motto “Make peace happen”.
One of the key conclusions of the Luanda Forum was the launch of a multi-stakeholders’ partnership for the implementation of this Action Plan through a series of coordinated actions at national, sub-regional and regional level.
In this context, the participants of the meeting decided to create the “Network of Foundations and Research Institutions Promoting a Culture of Peace in Africa” aiming at achieving the following objectives:
- Coordinate actions in order to ensure a common understanding and community of practices in pooling our resources in the implementation of our actions;
- Strengthen the visibility of our organizations and our activities among citizens and institutions at national and international level;
- Contribute to the implementation of the Luanda Action Plan by the elaboration and implementation of joint programs;
- Endeavor to implement the AU 2063 Agenda and the UNESCO Intersectoral Programme on Culture of Peace;
- Expand the network to African and non-African organizations with similar objectives.
The interim Secretariat is composed of the following organizations (click here for list):
The interim Secretariat, coordinated by the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for Peace Research, is responsible for:
- The elaboration of the meeting report on the establishment of the Network;
- The elaboration of appropriate legal instruments;
- The preparation of the first meeting of the Network in June 2014.
Among the joint projects proposed during the meeting, it is worth mentioning a research-action program on endogenous mechanisms of prevention and resolution of conflicts in Africa (University of Peace / Africa and UNESCO chair for the culture of peace / University of Cocody, Abidjan), the implementation of a web platform for the creation of a community of practices among members of the network (UNESCO chairs for the culture of peace and sustainable development of the Florence University, Italia) and the launch of an initiative for African youth and the culture of peace (Omar Bongo Ondimba Foundation).
Click here for list of all participating organizations.
( Click here for the French version of this article.
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List of participating organizations forming the interim Secretariat of the Network:
1- Eduardo Dos Santos Foundation – Angola
2- Centre international de recherche et de documentation sur les traditions les langues africaines (CERDOTOLA) - Cameroon
3- University of Peace (UPEACE) – Africa – Costa Rica / Ethiopia
4- UNESCO chair for the culture of peace – University of Cocody, Abidjan - Cote d’Ivoire
5- Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for Peace Research - Cote d’Ivoire
6- UNESCO chair for the culture of peace, conflict resolution, human rights, democracy and good governance – Democratic Republic of Congo
7- Centre régional de recherche et de documentation sur les femmes, le genre et la construction de la paix dans la région des Grands Lacs, Kinshasa – Regional Headquarters in Democratic Republic of Congo
8- Cairo Regional Center for Training on Conflict Resolution and Peace Keeping in Africa - Egypt
9- Institute for Security Studies (ISS) – Regional Headquarters in Ethiopia
10- Counseling and Youth Development Center for Africa – Malawi
11- Center for Peace and Development Studies – South Sudan
12- Peace Research Institute (PRI) – Khartoum University - Sudan
Founding members :
1- Agostinho Neto Foundation - Angola
2- Eduardo Dos Santos Foundation – Angola
3- Centre international pour l’éducation des Filles et des femmes en Afrique (CIEFFA) - Burkina Faso
4- Centre international de recherche et de documentation sur les traditions les langues africaines (CERDOTOLA) - Cameroon
5- West African Institute – Cape Verde
6- UNESCO chair for the culture of peace – University of Cocody/Abidjan - Cote d’Ivoire
7- Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for Peace Research - Cote d’Ivoire
8- Centre régional de recherche et de documentation sur les femmes, le genre et la construction de la paix dans la région des Grands Lacs, Kinshasa – Regional Headquarters in Democratic Republic of Congo
9- UNESCO chair for the culture of peace, conflict resolution, human rights, democracy and good governance – Democratic Republic of Congo
10- Cairo Regional Center for Training on Conflict Resolution and Peace Keeping in Africa - Egypt
11- University of Peace (UPEACE) – Africa – Costa Rica / Ethiopia
12- Institute for Security Studies (ISS) – Ethiopia
13- Institute for Peace and Security Studies (IPSS) – Ethiopia
14- Omar Bongo Ondimba Foundation / National Commission for UNESCO – Gabon
15- West Africa Center for Peace Studies (WACPS) - Ghana
16- UNESCO Transdisciplinary Chair for Human Development and Culture of Peace – Italia
17- Counseling and Youth Development Centre for Africa - Malawi
18- UNESCO chair for the culture of peace and human rights - Mali
19- Observatory of Cultural Policies in Africa (OCPA) - Mozambique
20- The Society For Peace Studies and Practice - Nigeria
21- Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) – Senegal / Switzerland
22- Conseil pour le développement de la recherche en sciences sociales en Afrique (CODESRIA) – Senegal
23- UNESCO "Oliver Tambo" Chair on Human Rights – South Africa
24- Center for Peace and Development Studies – South Sudan
25- Peace Research Institute (PRI) – Khartoum University - Sudan
26- Fondation Pax Africana – Togo
Organizations which did not participate in the meeting but wishing to join the network:
1- Ki-Zerbo Foundation – Burkina Faso
2- Amilcar Cabral Foundation – Cape Verde
3- The African Center for Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) – South Africa
4- « Cultura de Paz » Foundation – Spain
5- Association pour le développement de l’Education en Afrique - Tunisia
6- UNESCO Chair in African Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Bradford – United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
7- The Whitaker Peace and Development Initiative – United States of America
8- International Institute for Peace – United States of America