SIPRI is proud to host the 2018 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development with a focus on 'The Politics of Peace'.
Targeted, inclusive and sustained conflict prevention can contribute to lasting peace by reducing the risk of violent conflict. In complex environments, international commitments like the Sustainable Development Goals and Women, Peace and Security Agenda can provide entry points for prevention by identifying common ground among diverse stakeholders. In practice, though, political will is often lacking in the countries where prevention is most needed. In such cases, building unlikely or temporary coalitions may be necessary to keep the peace in the interim while more sustainable solutions are developed. Even when there is political will to prevent violence, individual actors can obstruct peacebuilding—either wilfully or through negligence—in pursuit of their own interests. Thus, sustaining peace is not just about good technical solutions, but it is also about getting the politics right.
Peacebuilders must find paths to work through, with and, occasionally, around, obstructive actors and institutions. The relative flexibility of temporary coalitions and ‘groups of friends’ can lend momentum to peace negotiations and allow participants to build the trust necessary to address unresolved disputes down the road. While ‘inclusive enough’ coalitions can generate the critical mass necessary to get peace started, they are not always durable. Such coalitions may need to be negotiated and adapted through instruments like sunrise and sunset clauses to enable today’s obstructionists to be brought into a future peace and avoid generating new grievances. Prevention, therefore, also requires careful planning, adaptation and farsighted diplomacy.
Building on the upcoming High-Level Meeting on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace and conclusions from the recent report ‘Pathways for Peace: Inclusive Approaches to Preventing Violent Conflict’ (United Nations; World Bank: 2017), the 2018 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development will confront the politics of peace by assessing how different policies, processes and tools could be used to overcome political obstacles to build and sustain peace in complex environments.
The Forum is co-hosted by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) and the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
Information about how to register for the public portion of the Forum (7 May) is forthcoming and will be posted on this webpage.
Attendance for 8-9 May is by invitation only. Please do not contact SIPRI requesting an invitation.
For media inquires, please contact Stephanie Blenckner (firstname.lastname@example.org, +46 8 655 97 47).
For other inquires, please contact Kate Sullivan (SthlmForum@sipri.org, + 46 76 248 13 55).