Selected in-depth contributions to the fields we work on, written by Berghof staff and invited affiliates, partners and guest researchers.


Transitional Security Arrangements: A Comparative Perspective

Security Dialogue Project - Background Paper

What can Cyprus learn from comparable cases? How have other settlements addressed security challenges, including the need for external guarantees and protection of human security? This paper draws on a range of settlements, but pays particular attention to other conflicts that include a de facto state or have been characterised by significant kin-state/patron-state involvement. Like the Cyprus conflict, these are at the extreme end of the spectrum of territorial solutions, which calls for creative solutions that fudge the issue of sovereignty. The paper finds a lack of examples of robust security guarantees being provided by a patron state, but there are examples of softer guarantees. The paper also considers other forms of guarantees that can supplement, or in some cases replace, external security guarantees. This includes the use of phases, built-in targets and conditions. The paper concludes by considering security within the state’s constituent units, in particular protections for local minorities.

Multi-Communal Security Force for United Cyprus

Security Dialogue Project - Background Paper

The purpose of this article is to present the concept of the ‘Multi-Communal Security Force’ (MCSF) and key considerations for future policy design on the issue in Cyprus. It is developed out of (1) a comparative analysis with other post-conflict societies – South Africa and Lebanon – who successfully shared military power by integrating former antagonist groups. It also builds on the author's reflections from previous (2) empirical research on militarism, masculinity and nationalism in Cyprus, (3) policy work for the Cyprus Ministry of Defense, and (4) for the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, as well as from (5) evaluation and assessment of the defence institutions of Cyprus with Transparency International.

Gender and Inclusive Security: A new approach to the Cyprus Problem within the framework on Security...

Security Dialogue Project - Background Paper

In the 57 years since the inception of the Republic of Cyprus, only three Greek Cypriot women have so far had any kind of involvement and impact in the peace process, with the situation being worse as far as the Turkish Cypriot community is concerned, where the corresponding number is a feeble one. Putting aside the obvious moral argument, this paper emphasizes a utilitarian approach to the necessity of applying a gender lens onto peace and security in the case of Cyprus. It proposes that a new dialectic should infuse the ongoing security dialogue between the two communities, the guarantor states and the international mediation team – that of inclusive security. That approach, it is argued, could not only leed to better outcomes, but also improve the long-term sustainability and political effectiveness of such outcomes.

Multicultural and Secure Urban Areas: The Importance of Global and Local Connectedness

Security Dialogue Project - Background Paper

Nicosia was once a flourishing meeting point of cultures, ideas, art, and culture. It was home to many and the light of the Island. Yet urban diversity and the continued socio-cultural expansion have ignited pivotal questions regarding how best to manage diversity and plan urban growth, while developing community projects and government policies that ensure sustainable, harmonious, inclusive, and secure shared urban public spaces. This is particularly true for the Cyprus case, with Nicosia. Experts from social science, psychology, urban sociology, urban planning, architecture and a range of disparate fields have insights into the subjects of social cohesion / connectivity and the design of public spaces. These are informed by research. Users of such spaces also have insights. Innovative approaches when designing urban public spaces and managing diversity are necessary to foster social harmony within these re-created and shared spaces.

Federal Cyprus in the Context of Regional Security

Security Dialogue Project - Background Paper

The present paper seeks to examine the security aspect of a post-settlement Federal Cyprus. Among other things, the paper assesses the current external security environment of Cyprus in order to identify and prioritize certain security challenges, and analyses four security areas that may pose threats or challenges to the external relations or domestic stability of post-settlement Cyprus. It is argued that a secure and politically stable Federal Cyprus will first and foremost need a reliable political system with functioning decision-making mechanisms in order to pursue a coherent and effective foreign and security policy without crisis-producing deadlocks; the very political system will be its best “guarantor”. Lastly, targeted actions, a number of which are proposed, should be undertaken as soon as possible for the development of a federal security culture – i.e. convergence of communal interests and preferences – which will allow for joint strategic formulation and the development of a common sense of direction in the various policy areas of the federal state.

Transitional Justice in Cyprus. Challenges and Opportunities

Security Dialogue Project - Background Paper

Transitional justice has become an important part of building peace after signing a peace agreement for many reasons, but primarily because it seeks to build trust between citizens and their institutions after conflict or legacies of authoritarianism, and to create new relationships between citizens to overcome fears and mistrust based on the past. It is best understood as a complex social process aimed at addressing legacies of large-scale victimisation, hatred, and violence.This paper aims to equip policymakers with the information needed to create a strategy for moving towards the goals of building a more trustful, engaged, and cohesive island. It is divided into four sections. Part one explains the origins and approaches of transitional justice, and presents the field’s assumptions and alternative views. Part two outlines the relevance of transitional justice to Cyprus. Part three sets out key lessons from best practice in the field. Finally, part four outlines how transitional justice can be used to build a more secure Cyprus.

Wadahadalada asaasiga ah ee Dowlad Goboleedka Hirshabelle: Talooyin Federaalka ku saabsan oo aay...

Warbixinta Mashruuca

Warbixintaan iyo talooyinka la socdo waxa asal u ah mashruuc aay Berghof Foundation 2015-2016ki ka fulisay Dowlad Goboleedka Hirshabelle. Kaasoo lagu magacaabay “Dhismaha Federaalka ayadoo loo maraayo wadahadalka Dawladaha Hoose”. Hal qeyb oo mashruucaasi ka mid ah waxuu ahaa fulinta shirar lix ah oo kala duwan kuwaasoo muddo lix casho ah socday oo aay ku dhawaad 60 qof ka qeybqaateen. Tani waa warbixin soo koobeyso arimihii ugu muhiimsanaa ee lagu falanqeyay lixdaas shirar oo la xiriira habka Federaalka, doorka aay Dawlad Hoose ku leedahay nidaam Federaal ah iyo sida deg degta ah ee uu Gobolka Hirshabelle ugu baahanyahay xalinta khilaafaadka iyo dib u heshiisiin.

Berghof Foundation Annual Report 2016

Our Annual Report provides information about the projects that we have worked ontogether with our partners in 2016. A particular light is shed on our support tonational dialogues, an approach that has raised interest among conflict partiesin countries that are transitioning from an autocratic system to more participatorygovernance.

Collective Trauma and Resilience: Key Concepts in Transforming War-related Identities

Berghof Handbook Dialogue Series No. 11 - comment

This contribution was inspired by Berghof Handbook Dialogue issue no. 11, “Transforming War-related Identities. Individual and Social Approaches to Healing and Dealing with the Past” (Austin/Fischer 2016). It offers an additional perspective on transforming-war related identities in the context of protracted violent conflicts.

Grass-Roots Dialogue in Hirshabelle State: Recommendations for Locally-Informed Federalism in...

Project Report

This project report with recommendations has been informed by a project that the Berghof Foundation carried out in 2015-2016 in Hirshabelle State in Somalia entitled “Building Federalism through Local Government Dialogue”. One component of this project entailed the implementation of six separate Somali dialogue assemblies – Shirarka – all taking place over six days with approximately 60 participants. This report is a brief summary of the pertinent issues that were discussed at these six assemblies in relation to the federalization process, the role of local government in a federal system, and the urgent need for conflict resolution and reconciliation in Hirshabelle State.