Transitions Series

The Berghof Transitions Series includes case studies initially produced within the framework of the Berghof research project Resistance/Liberation Movements and Transitions to Politics: Building a Network of Experience. Since then, we have maintained this space in order to provide an opportunity for “insider experts” from resistance/liberation movements that take part in our research and capacity-building activities to reflect critically on their past or ongoing conflict transformation experience. The views expressed are those of the authors and contributors, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Berghof Foundation.


Transiciones políticas para el posconflicto: ¿De procesos participativos a resultados incluyentes en...

Informe de investigación

El presente informe de investigación se propone aportar a los debates académicos y de políticas sobre el tema, mediante la presentación de los resultados comparativos obtenidos de un proyecto de investigación colaborativa de 28 meses (febrero 2013-junio 2015) financiado por el Centro Internacional de Investigación para el Desarrollo (Canadá) y titulado “Cómo evitar la recaída en el conflicto mediante acuerdos políticos y construcción de Estado incluyentes tras conflictos intraestatales: oportunidades, enfoques y lecciones aprendidas”. El análisis se basa en datos recolectados durante el trabajo de campo realizado por seis equipos de investigación locales en Colombia, El Salvador, Sudáfrica, Sudán del Sur, Aceh (Indonesia) y Nepal, en 2013-14, así como en numerosas discusiones sobre los hallazgos preliminares, llevadas a cabo en diversos eventos relacionados con el proyecto (reuniones de los participantes, discusiones sobre políticas y mesas redondas), entre 2013 y 2015.

El informe de investigación en inglés >

Peaceful Coexistence? ‘Traditional’ and ‘Non-traditional’ Conflict Resolution Mechanisms

Research Report

This report is the final analytical report of a comparative research project generously funded by the German Foundation for Peace Research and implemented by the Berghof Foundation. The project analyzes the forms of coexistence between ‘traditional’ (indigenous, local, community-based) and ‘non-traditional’ (imported, liberal, state-based, Western) approaches to conflict resolution, and is based on field research in Colombia, Liberia and Northeast India. Its central line of inquiry examines whether the coexistence of traditional and non-traditional mechanisms of conflict resolution leads to tension and competition between these mechanisms, thereby potentially furthering conflict, or whether the coexistence leads to more (or better) conflict resolution options for the population, thereby promoting conflict settlement processes and outcomes.

Basics of Mediation: Concepts and Definitions

Fact Sheet Series: Peace Mediation and Mediation Support

This fact sheet is part of a fact sheet series on peace mediation that providesa structured overview of approaches, stakeholders, challenges and possibilitiesfor action in the field of peace mediation.

National Dialogue Handbook. A Guide for Practitioners

Grounded in a series of contemporary case studies, this Handbook aims to contribute to the nascent debate about National Dialogue, bringing together insights and expertise from diverse regions. In doing so,it seeks to present systematic reflections and offer practical advice. The Handbook thus supports conflict stake-holders and practitioners (both local and international) to grapple with the challenges they face and to pursue the most appropriate design for their particular context. Moving beyond simplistic approaches, the Handbook also seeks to provide an overview of National Dialogue processes, drawing from the expertise and practices of scholars and practitioners. The purpose of the Handbook istwofold: (1) to offer an analytical framework of National Dialogues and (2) to serve as a practical tool for those engaged in the implementation of these processes. This Handbook thus offers a unique practice-oriented resource guide for comprehensively designing, implementing and supporting National Dialogues.

US and German Civilian-led Efforts in Conflict and Fragile Contexts: Addressing Internal Challenges...

Policy Brief No. 7

This brief takes a close look at the government responses of Germany and the United States to conflict and crises around the globe and examines some of the internal challenges that inhibit both countries’ ability to implement conflict mitigation and prevention programs and ultimately their ability to deliver effective foreign assistance abroad. This brief makes recommendations in light of four core obstacles that must be addressed if both nations want to improve their foreign assistance delivery and help to stabilize and transform conflict in fragile contexts.

Dealing with the Past. Supporting people-centred “working-through” the legacies of violence

Policy Brief No. 6

This policy brief hones in on the specific ways in which a people-centred approach to dealing with the past can be built from the ground up,complementing the previous Berghof Policy Brief no. 5. It works through the commonalities and differences between transitional justice,reconciliation and dealing with the past; and puts emphasis on the dual roles of the victims and their potential in either escalating or de-escalating violent approaches to conflict.

Hitting the target but missing the point?

Assessing donor support for inclusive and legitimate politics in fragile societies

The International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding’s ‘New Deal for engagement in Fragile States’ (“New Deal”) of late 2011 promised an end to ‘business as usual’ with regard to development efforts in fragile environments. This report takes stock of the question of how bilateral and multilateral donors have conceptualized and implemented their commitment to promote ‘legitim ate and inclusive political settlements and conflict resolution’ (PSG1). On the basis of empirical evidence acquired through case studies in Afghanistan, Somalia, South Sudan and Timor-Leste, the report finds that, at best, donors work with an incomplete and inadequate understanding of the typically fragmented and highly contested politics of fragile societies beyond the formal representatives of their governments and administrations.

Friedensgutachten 2016 didaktisch

Educational & Multimedia

Jedes Jahr veröffentlichen fünf Friedensforschungsinstitute in Deutschland ein Friedensgutachten. Die Berghof Foundation (Programm Friedenspädagogik und Globales Lernen) hat zum zweiten Mal ein pädagogisch-didaktisches Begleitmaterial erarbeitet und veröffentlicht: Friedensgutachten 2016 didaktisch. Das Friedensgutachten 2016 didaktisch setzt sich insbesondere mit den Themen Flucht(ursachen), Kleinwaffen-/Rüstungsexport, Schutzverantwortung (Responsibility to Protect) sowie Radikalisierung/“Islamischer Staat“ auseinander. Es wendet sich vor allem an Schulen (Sekundarstufe II) und macht diese brandaktuellen, gesellschaftlich kontrovers diskutierten Herausforderungen mit Texten, Fotos, Karikaturen und Arbeitshinweisen als didaktische Handreichung zugänglich. Die Broschüre entstand in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Institut für Friedensforschung und Sicherheitspolitik an der Universität Hamburg (IFSH) und wurde von der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg, Behörde für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Gleichstellung gefördert.Es wird eine Schutzgebühr von 5,00€ erhoben.

Documentation Conference "Strengthening a culture of dialogue in Jordan" (engl.)

Educationanl & Multimedia

The documentation of the conference gives an insight into the different panel speeches, the vivid discussions as well as the thorough exchange of experiences and expertise between multipliers, including several university presidents and professors, as well as Jordanian and German experts with political, social or educational backgrounds. This exchange was particularly enabled through the interactive method "World Café".

Organisations under pressure but powering on - the psychosocial approach within integrated...

A model for human rights organisations and donor organisations

This guide offers a model and elaborates its recommendations for threatened human rights organisations and donor organisations on dealing with threat in an integrated manner. It specifically focuses on incorporating a psychosocial approach into the organisations’ routines, spaces and structures as a crucial element of integrated threat management. Drawing together lessons and insights from a joint learning process within the framework of the project “MAPA”, it emphasises how HRO and donors can work together towards achieving this goal. The guide is meant to help initiate a change process and stimulate further engagement with the topic, thereby seeking to contribute to maintaining human rights organisations’ scope for action in violent contexts. Understood as complementary to existing literature, this interactive guide provides links to other publications on the topic.