Center for Conflict Studies Knowledge as Action, Action as Change

Peace, Trade & Development

This year, the Center for Conflict Studies (CCS) will cooperate with the Graduate School of International Policy and Management at MIIS to offer a four-week summer program on Peace, Trade and Development (PTD). The ‘“Peace” aspect of the program is of particular importance to CCS.

“Peace” in the PTD program is defined as positive peace: when all forms of violence are dealt with. This includes, notably, structural violence – violence unleashed upon certain groups simply because the structure is discriminatory or oppressive towards them. Peacebuilding, with its goal of creating positive peace in societies that are just emerging from war or violent conflict, includes transforming violent structures into balanced and just systems, bettering relationships between parties in conflict and creating conditions by which violent conflicts do not arise.

In keeping with the Center’s goal to bridge theory and practice, CCS Director, Dr. Pushpa Iyer, will lead several sessions that will provide students with theoretical, analytical and practical skills:

Introduction to Conflict and Peace

Students will be introduced to the field of conflict and peace studies, some key concepts and terminologies in the field and will practice doing in-depth analysis.

Gender and Culture in Conflict

Students will explore the role of gender and culture in conflict and also how culture and gender can contribute to resolving conflicts.

Challenges to Peacebuilding

Through the use of case studies, students will be introduced to the various challenges faced by peacebuilders in societies emerging from war with a primary focus on the role of trade and development in building peace.

Skills for the Field

Students will add to their toolbox skills that would come in particularly handy when dealing with conflicts and building peace on the ground.

Dr. Iyer will lead a field session to Salinas where students will learn from various organizations some of the challenges associated with ending gang violence.

Through this program the Center hopes that its slogan “Knowledge as Action; Action as Change” will materialize with the student body being transformed into agents of social change.

For more information about the 2013 Peace, Trade and Development Program, please visit