Joint Action for Prevention: Civil Society and Government Cooperation on Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding

In recent years, there has been increased recognition of the role civil society organizations (CSOs) can play as partners with governments and inter-governmental organizations (IGOs) in conflict prevention and peacebuilding work. This potential role has been articulated in government policy documents and
acknowledged by various UN reports and declarations, including reports published by the Security Council, and regional organizations. Translating these statements and principles into systemized working modalities and effective practice remains erratic however. But there are a number of promising examples of good practice and opportunities to learn from. For example, some governments have begun to develop policies on conflict prevention and peacebuilding, often with the active
involvement of national and international CSOs who have been consulted on the contents and on how best to implement the new objectives.

This paper concentrates on examining some of the issues in forging appropriate
and effective partnerships between governments and CSOs to work with conflicts at home and internationally. This issue paper follows from a discussion paper written by Catherine Barnes. That paper intended to stimulate the discussion for a strategy meeting of the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict
(GPPAC) on strengthening cooperation between governments, foundations and civil society working together on conflict and peace issues, which took place
in October 2006. Building upon the theoretical framework of Catherine Barnes this issue paper presents fourteen extended case studies from many regions in the
world. Some of these cases are a follow up from the earlier discussion paper, others are newly presented.

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