Reports & Studies
"Human Rights in Conflict Resolution: The Role of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in UN Peacemaking and Peacebuilding"
This study describes and analyzes recent situations in which the United Nations has played a central role, while also examining where human rights and conflict resolution concerns (as evidenced by formal involvement of the UN's Department of Political Affairs and/or Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights) have been significant. It will include an evaluation of the current status of UN inter-agency cooperation, particularly between OHCHR and DPA. Furthermore, this work will offer a set of recommendations to guide OHCHR's role in UN peacemaking and peacebuilding in the future. The study's recommendations will be discussed at a meeting, tentatively scheduled for December 2004, for senior UN staff and others. A final set of guidelines will be formulated and follow the December meeting. The study is being conducted under the auspices of the Geneva-based Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue and is funded by the British, Norwegian, and Swiss governments.
"Zimbabwe's 'New Clothes': Unraveling the Fabric of Identity and Power Among Displaced Farm Workers"
Since 2000, when President Mugabe and the ZANU (PF) government's instituted fast-track land reform in earnest, the violent expropriation and redistribution of land has threatened the very fabric of Zimbabwean society. The citizenship rights of white farmers are being atrociously undermined while the very livelihood possibilities of farm workers face virtual extinction. Though the abuse of fundamental rights and freedoms should demand accountability, it is the denial of farm workers' livelihoods that defines the immediate urgency of the current crisis. What has been dubbed an illegal land grab, referred to as the "Third Chimurenga," narrates conceptions of national identity with the reconfiguration of land and resources in a modern-day African drama pitting narrow-minded notions of power and control against broader definitions of survival and security. To address the violence in Zimbabwe, theorists and practitioners alike utilize the accepted framework of pinpointing where national and international responsibility must intersect with 'victim-hood'. From this perspective, the scope and scale of the need is defined first in order to then propose appropriate policies and practice that will lead to the resolution and prevention of escalating tragedy.
"Imagining Coexistence: Assessing Refugee Integration Efforts in Divided Communities"
The Imagine Coexistence Project was an initiative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), supported by funds from the Japanese government through the United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security. CHRCR's report for UNHCR examines the efficacy and impact of coexistence projects and initiatives in Bosnia and Rwanda.
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Edited Volume on Human Rights and Conflict Resolution
CHRCR is currently preparing a book that reviews the relationship between human rights advocates and conflict resolvers in three critical conflict settings: Colombia, Kashmir and Sierra Leone. This project, partially funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, evaluates the past experience of experts in each field with respect to how each may have contributed to or detracted from the efforts of the other and formulates policy recommendations to strengthen communication and cooperation between the two fields. With respect to each of these countries, a human rights advocate and a conflict resolver will each contribute a paper that describes the goals, methods, and outcome of efforts of those working in their field. These authors will also examine the ways professionals from the other field have helped or hindered their work. Human rights and conflict resolution scholars will then analyze the paired case studies from a theoretical perspective, critique the effectiveness of the efforts undertaken, and propose policy recommendations that will improve the overall effectiveness of those working in both fields.
This book, edited by CHRCR co-directors Professors Hannum and Babbitt, is based on the results of a long-term research project (supported by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation) which examined whether self-determination claims more often lead to violence than other conflicts and whether these claims are more difficult to resolve.
Fletcher Forum of World Affairs. Winter/Spring 2003: "Bellum Americanum"
By Hurst Hannum. By the end of the 1990s, Pax Americana seemed to have become bellum americanum, as the desire to keep the peace took second place to a desire to accomplish "good" through war. Neutral intervention under the auspices of the UN gave way to support for one side in a conflict. Peace has given way to justice, as defined by the White House. Sovereignty continues to be asserted to protect U.S. soldiers from the International Criminal Court, but it no longer shields other states from American attack."
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Fletcher Forum of World Affairs. Winter/Spring 2003: "Human Rights and Conflict Resolution from the Practitioners' Perspectives"
By Ellen Lutz, Eileen Babbitt, and Hurst Hannum. (excerpt): "This paper explores the synergies and tensions between human rights and conflict resolution practitioners. We begin by surveying the core principles, goals, and values of the two fields. Next we look at the methods used by practitioners in each field during each of the three stages of conflict: before violence breaks out, during violent conflict, and after settlement. We summarize three areas of recurring tension bewtee the two fields and suggest some remedies to relieve these strains. Finally, we suggest research on the ways in which each field can better enhance its own capability and that of the other field to promote peace and the protection of human rights." View article [PDF]
"Bridge the Knowledge-Action Gap! The Authoritative Statement on How to Reduce Political Violence"
HRCR Senior Fellow Benjamin C. Hoffman's latest publication aims to provide "practical ideas that will result in a significant reduction in political violence...to determine...'what works', what is not effective, and what is needed." He asserts "that there is enough technical knowledge now to significantly reduce political violence. Conflict resolution practitioners, however, must learn the art of making a compelling argument for peace. They must obtain political commitment to action. And then they must take coordinated action on the basis of best practice."View article [PDF]
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