Over forty international experts, policy-makers, researchers and peace activists are at the Magee campus of the University of Ulster this week for the 13th INCORE International Summer School. Delegates come from some 15 countries including Sudan, Ethiopia, Lebanon, Kenya, Japan, the United States, Canada, Australia, and several European countries.
They are joined by local practitioners and scholars for an intense week of reflection on state-of-the art learning and practice in managing, resolving and transforming conflict.The Summer School led by INCORE staff and other international experts is well established and over the years has built into a network of nearly 600 practitioners worldwide.
Professor Brandon Hamber, INCORE Director said the success of the INCORE Summer School over the past decade had highlighted the importance of understanding peacebuilding comparatively. “Northern Ireland has been a touchstone in such debates and a live case study to learn from. At the same time, there is still a lot to learn from other places that are further down the line in their attempts to sustain peace. The INCORE Summer School is a venue for exchanging lessons, building networks and equipping practitioners to continue to engage in vital and long-term peacebuilding work.”
The 2012 INCORE summer school begins on Monday18 June and includes modules on:
Evaluation in Conflict Prone Settings
Language, Truth, and the Politics of Memory in Conflict
Learning from a Society in Transition: the case of Northern Ireland
Alongside these modules, INCORE also runs the Northern Ireland programme to provide participants with an opportunity to network with others and gain deeper insight into Northern Ireland. This program encompasses lectures on the Northern Ireland peace process, as well as on contemporary issues such as flags and emblems. It also includes a walking tour of the city and opportunities to experience arts within the 2013 City of Culture.
A joint seminar focusing on the role of education in peacebuilding will also take place as part of the programme this year. This will be held jointly with the UNESCO Centre at the University of Ulster and include contributions from Dr Mario Novelli, University of Sussex, Dr Tejendra Pherali, Liverpool John Moores University, and Professor Alan Smith from Ulster.
The Summer School programme includes a lecture on Wednesday 20 June by Professor Roger MacGinty entitled ‘Everyday Diplomacy’.
MacGinty is a Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute and the Department of Politics at the University of Manchester. His lecture will examine the everyday diplomacy that people use to navigate their way through life in deeply divided contexts and unpack the sophisticated coping mechanisms that individuals and groups have developed to ease their passage in violent societies.
Professor Deirdre Heenan, Provost and Dean of Academic Development on the Magee Campus said that the INCORE International Summer School is one of the highlights of the academic calendar at Magee.
“It reinforces the high quality work on conflict transformation and peacebuilding undertaken at INCORE and the University of Ulster, both in terms of research and impact. The on-going global interest in INCORE’s work highlights that it is seen as an international centre of excellence in peace and conflict studies.”
The Community Relations Councilsupported the Summer Schoolby providingbursaries for local participants.