Ulster University has secured a share of a £4.4 million research grant that will see the institution collaborate on a major global project aimed at helping countries affected by conflict to successfully and peacefully rebuild their societies.
Ulster University's Transitional Justice Institute (TJI) will work with University of Edinburgh Global Justice Academy, Rift Valley Institute in Kenya, London-based organisation Conciliation Resources and the South African Institute for Security Studies, on the multi-million pound Political Settlements Research Programme, funded by the UK Department for International Development.
The research will look at how political settlements work in different countries, how they can be improved to include all citizens, bring equality to fragile political landscapes and determine how best to exercise new power and responsibilities.
With its highly respected research expertise on the importance of engaging and supporting women in a variety of contexts, Ulster University has secured almost £700,000 of the grant to lead specifically on a gender focused work stream. This will look at violence against women post-conflict, the impact of gender and international norms for gender equality on political settlements in fragile and conflict-affected states.
Rory O'Connell, Director of the Transitional Justice Institute at Ulster University said:
"This landmark project brings together global academic legal expertise and will inform and promote more effective national and international development policies for fragile states.
"As the top university in the UK for world-leading law research in terms of its impact, to secure this grant and be part of the collaboration is a real endorsement of the quality and calibre of our research, particularly on issues of gender and conflict.
"It will put Ulster University and the global reach of its law research firmly in the spotlight and, we hope ultimately support people as they build more stable and effective institutions, reduce poverty, and prevent violence."The research will begin in April 2015 and the project duration is four years. Initial findings will be publicised in early 2016
More information on the project can be found at politicalsettlements.org