Irenees.net is a documentary website whose purpose is to promote an exchange of knowledge and know-how at the service of the construction of an Art of peace.
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The underlying assumptions of this tool is that "when local actors have ties that keep them connected in a constructive manner they will be better able to work collaboratively and to address the elements that generate tension”. A strategy with long-term positive effects is usually directed at improving these "connectors". After an analysis of connectors and dividers, the peace agenda will have a positive effect on elements that generate tension, and the factors that cause division among actors.
Connectors are those elements that make people in a community work together despite their differences. These connectors may be institutions, shared values, shared experiences or certain symbols that unify the community.
Moreover, these aspects are called dividers when they aggravate tensions and increase the potential for hostility. Other examples are institutions or institutional actions that produce conflict, divergent experiences, values and attitudes that antagonize incompatible goals or symbols.
According to the Do No Harm framework, peace is holistic, dynamic and changing in every local setting. This concept of peace focuses on the transformation of relationships and structures that underlie the injustices against groups in a community. Consequently, peacebuilding is much more than the end of war. Peacebuilding means to help members of the community and other stakeholders like government, the private sector, etc. to recognize the "interdependence" between themselves. Also, peace means learning to work collaboratively toward shared goals in spite of differences.
Peace is not the opposite to conflict, as conflicts do not necessarily involve violence if they are handled constructively. However, Mary Anderson in her book "Do No Harm: How Can aid support Peace-or War" emphasizes that conflict, whilst not a bad thing, is not something to be sought out as an end in itself, especially when conflict is a reflection of deep injustice in society. In order to build peace in a local context, it is essential that conflicts are understood to contain more complexity than just "good or bad" or "problems and solutions". Consequently, conflict transformation involves changes in the local sub-system and requires addressing structural factors such as regulations, policies, economic systems, resources, etc. It also requires personal and cultural change (attitudes, personal assessment, values regarding violence and peace). The focus of the analysis of connectors and dividers is not on "resolving conflicts" but on "transforming conflict conditions" in environments where they arise.
Sometimes an institution or a peace program might be working hard and investing resources in the wrong direction. The short-term results may seem encouraging and may encourage the team to move on, but despite this the program shows results in the long run. Even in some cases the program may have a "rebound" aggravating the conflict situation in the community with the passage of time.