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The Centre brings together two strands of conflict research that were studied holistically when ‘conflict studies’ emerged in the 1960s, but have since separated: research on local, organizational, policy, and other conflicts in developed democracies and research on collective violence, civil war, and massive human rights violations.  On both sides, the Centre organizes research and practice initiatives on the factors influencing the development of conflict and on approaches to conflict resolution and peacebuilding.

Humanitarian Response, Resilience and Peacebuilding

Conflicts and political violence are often accompanied by displacement, an increase in medical emergencies, shortages of basic needs, and infrastructural collapse. This is the operational terrain of humanitarianism aimed at saving lives, reducing suffering, and upholding human dignity in emergencies. Humanitarian responses are therefore an integral part of the conflict landscape and the mitigation of conflict’s impact on affected populations.

Peacebuilding is aimed at preventing the outbreak, recurrence or continuation of armed conflict. Ending and preventing civil wars and other forms of armed violence often includes peace negotiations; the deployment of UN peacekeeping operations; the protection of civilians in conflict zones; and violence prevention and reconciliation efforts. 

The humanitarian response and peacebuilding fields include a wide range of actors from states and their militaries; to UN agencies, peacekeepers, regional organizations and international NGOs; to local actors, such as civil society, women groups, or health care workers and emergency responders.

The Amsterdam Centre for Conflict Studies brings together a number of researchers and practitioners working in the field of humanitarianism and peacebuilding to explore key issues such as current and future challenges in humanitarianism and humanitarian responses to people on the move; civilian (self)-protection and well-being; the use of force in peacekeeping operations; the gender dimensions of conflict and women’s peacebuilding networks; and diverse forms of local peace and resilience building.