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International conference on Comparative Peacebuilding

2017-2018 in Sri Lanka, Indonesia and UK

Three conferences will be held in Sri Lanka, Indonesia and the United Kingdom supported by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Independent Social Research Foundation (ISRF) in 2017 and 2018. The name is "Comparative Peacebuilding in Asia - Liberal and Illiberal Transitions from Ethnic Conflict and Authoritarianism".

This series of three conferences seeks to promote research and facilitate interdisciplinary discussions on the illiberal, nationally driven peacebuilding processes in conflict-affected South and Southeast Asia. There has been an extraordinary expansion of academic interest in this field, and a new generation of scholars is producing exciting research drawing on theoretical innovations and empirical advances, including interesting comparative work. 

The objective is to create opportunities for the study of illiberal modes of peacebuilding in order to connect, gain exposure, develop common conceptual categories, achieve comparative depth, speak across disciplines, gain rigour, and build momentum.

Research questions

  • Why do some regimes select illiberal peacebuilding?
  • Is illiberal peacebuilding a useful concept, and to what extent does it differ from liberal modes of peacebuilding?
  • How do the policies and practices of illiberal peacebuilding vary across different states and why? In particular, why are some illiberal peacebuilding processes more “liberal” than others?
  • What is the frictional engagement between illiberal and liberal peacebuilding at international, regional, national, and local levels?
  • How durable is illiberal peace? What are the outcomes of illiberal peacebuilding, on which groups, and how do we explain that variation?
  • Has democratic institutional deepening and the end of authoritarianism in Asia complemented ethnic conflict resolution, or weakened it, thus far? What are the future prospects for these two processes working in harmony, especially in the time of Brexit and President Donald Trump? 

Conference dates

Colombo, Sri Lanka: 30 June - 2 July 2017

Yogyakarta, Indonesia: December 2017 (precise dates to be confirmed)

London, UK: June 2018 (precise dates to be confirmed)

To express interest in contributing to this conference series please submit a 300-word abstract of a research paper and a short CV (no more than 2 pages) by 24 February 2017 to nicholas [dot] farrelly [at] anu [dot] edu [dot] au with “Comparative Peacebuilding” as the subject line.