The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) was recently represented in a meeting of African think tanks which aimed to discuss the way forward for the Africa Portal, an open access online knowledge resource for policy-related issues on Africa. The meeting, which was held on 11 November 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa, was hosted by the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) and the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI).
Although secessionist movements in various parts of sub-Saharan Africa were common in the 1980s and 90s, only Eritrea and South Sudan managed to gain independence, in 1993 and 2011 respectively. The question still remains, however, whether these countries are on track in addressing the main peacebuilding, state building and democratic consolidation challenges that emerged in the aftermath of secession.
Anthropological and socio-historical studies of the pre-colonial African Great Lakes region have testified to long periods of political stability as well as socio-economic development under various kingdoms and chiefdoms which comprised the region. Shockingly, however, most of the recorded history of the post-colonial African Great Lakes region depicts a scenario of elusive peace, punctuated by severe political turmoil as well as a socio-economic fabric torn apart by violence. Against this background, ACCORD recently hosted an Internal Staff Seminar to unpack the origins of conflicts in the region and present strategies for resolving these.
Under the theme 'Alternative Dispute Resolution and Peace Studies in Africa: Lessons, Prospects and Challenges', ACCORD and the Center for African Peace & Conflict Resolution (CAPCR) at California State University, Sacramento, will co-host the 4th International Africa Peace and Conflict Resolution Conference from 25 to 26 July 2014 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Eight years after the official end of Sudan's civil war and two years into the birth of the Republic of South Sudan, though strides have been made towards institution building, the nation is faced with increasingly violent communal conflicts, says Nhial Gogok, intern in ACCORD's South Sudan Initiative. Gogok gave a presentation during an Internal Staff Seminar on 05 July 2013 at ACCORD House in Durban, prompting lively discussions among staff and enhancing their understanding and analysis of the context, dynamics and nuances of communal conflict in South Sudan.
ACCORD has published the outcomes from the inaugural High Level Retreat of the African Union Panel of the Wise on Strengthening Relations with Similar Regional Mechanisms in a report which is now available on the institution's website. The 60-page report provides information on the proceedings and outcomes from the high level retreat which was convened by the African Union Peace and Security Department, in collaboration with ACCORD on 4 and 5 June 2012 in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
Although large-scale agricultural land transaction is not a new phenomenon in Africa, the global financial and food crises that simultaneously erupted in 2007/2008 triggered a renewed interest in Africa's agricultural land. Some have labelled the current trend 'land grabbing', others cautiously speak of 'large-scale land acquisitions', while the World Bank calls it 'rising global interest in farmland'. Whatever terminology is employed to characterise this phenomenon, Africa is faced with the reality that large swathes of its farmland are being sold or leased out to large-scale investors.
The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) recently published a Policy & Practice Brief (PPB) entitled The OAU/AU and an Africa at peace with itself: Time for serious business. Authored by ACCORD Senior Research Fellow Angela Muvumba Sellström, this brief forms part of ACCORD's contribution to the Golden Jubilee celebrations of the 1963 founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU)/African Union (AU).
Country-specific information and reports shared by participants at the annual meeting of the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) Southern Africa Regional Steering Committee indicated that the key issues threatening stability and human security across the region include a democratic deficit, pre- and post-electoral tensions and violence, and challenges around disarmament and reintegration of former combatants.
ACCORD Senior Researcher, Professor Jannie Malan, has had his presentation on religion, conflict and peace extremely well received at the Oxford Round Table Conference on Religion held between 28 July and 1 August 2013 at Brasenose College in the University of Oxford, UK. The presentation, based on Malan's current research focus on the reasons why religious people cause conflict and how they can prevent and resolve the same.
A key role of ACCORD's Knowledge Production Department (KPD) is building the capacity of members of staff in various areas through organising and hosting internal capacity strengthening activities. In line with this mandate, KPD hosted the first Academic Writing Skills Workshop for 2013 at the Kingfisher Lodge in Durban, South Africa on 15 July 2013.
- ACCORD focus on role of Nigerian youth in peacebuilding
- Internal staff seminar unpacks peace infrastructures
- ACCORD interrogates regional cooperation for elimination of LRA
- ACCORD publishes conference paper on consolidation of peace after post-electoral crisis in Côte d'Ivoire
- ACCORD hosts debate on the significance of the APRM to African governance
- ACCORD examines Liberia’s justice and security sector reform
- ACCORD hosts debate on the APRM in celebration of its 10th anniversary
- Latest Policy & Practice Brief examines Zimbabwe and Kenya’s post-peace agreement polls
- ACCORD publishes Policy & Practice Brief on political impasse in Madagascar
- ACCORD internal staff seminar explores effectiveness of non-violent action in conflict prevention
- ACCORD publishes Occasional Paper on forms of justice in post-conflict Sierra Leone
- ACCORD participates in GPPAC Asia-Africa Learning Exchange on gender-sensitive conflict analysis
- ACCORD 's Mutisi presents at prestigious ISA conference on global information age
- Dr Alejandro Bendana examines road to peace in Somalia at ACCORD seminar
- ACCORD internal staff seminar looks at justice, reconciliation and reconstruction in post-apartheid South Africa
- Ndinga-Muvumba at Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation 50th Anniversary Roundtable
- Ndinga-Muvumba presents at US State Department conference on the AU
- Panel Discussion on Climate Change Adaptation, Conflict and Cooperation during COP17
- ACCORD represented at ICGLR conference on sexual and gender-based violence
- ACCORD chairs session on food security at international conference on climate diplomacy