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Education in Conflict and Emergencies



Archive for the '2015/16' Category

Beyond the Two Faces of Education – Towards a Nomothetic Understanding of Education in Conflict and Emergencies

IOE Digital5 May 2017

It has been 15 years since UNICEF published The Two Faces of Education – Towards a Peacebuilding Education for Children. Drawing on a large number of case studies, that monograph systematically enumerated and analyzed the positive and negative potential impacts of education in a range of conflict-prone cases. The Two Faces of Education has been called the ‘Bible for education programming in conflict settings,’ and has been the basis for countless articles, theses, policy papers, and conference panels. While the talk will touch on the origin, structure and content of Two Faces of Education, its primary concern will be on how (and why) we, as a community of applied researchers, practitioners, and policy makers, must take the next step beyond the initial analytical observations of that study towards research which is (still) empirically-grounded, ethnographically rich, and practice-focused, but which ultimately generates nomothetic, rather than idiographic, understanding. This argument is rooted in the observation that the myriad studies on education in conflict-prone and emergency settings have tended to generate case-specific insights and recommendations based on individual (or a small number of) projects, programmes, and countries. A comprehensive, global, assessment has yet to be developed or undertaken. The talk will conclude with a discussion with the audience on how we might nudge our work in this direction — inside and outside the academy.

For PDF Copies of Kenneth Bush and Diana Salterelli (2000). The Two Faces of Education – Towards a Peacebuilding Education for Children.  UNICEF Innocenti Centre: Florence: http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/insight4.pdf

Engaging young people with conflict through the narratives of former combatants in Northern Ireland

IOE Digital5 May 2017

Thursday 3 December 2015, 17.30 – 19.00, Room 802, 20 Bedford Way, UCL Institute of Education, London

In this seminar, Lesley Emerson, of Queen’s University Belfast presents her recent paper, “Engaging young people with conflict through the narratives of former combatants in Northern Ireland.” This will be done as an interactive workshop. The aim of this paper is to discuss findings from an impact evaluation of a curriculum programme designed to engage young people directly with ‘conflict’ though the narratives of former ‘paramilitary’ combatants in Northern Ireland. The programme seeks to develop within young people an understanding of the nature, reality and complexity of conflict and transition to peace. In particular it seeks to engender a sense of ‘political generosity’, that is a confidence in young people in their own political/cultural identity alongside a respect for the rights of others to hold alternative political views. The research suggests that foregrounding the nature of conflict and the processes of conflict transformation in the curriculum, through the narratives of those who were directly involved in conflict (arguably the most contentious ‘voices’), has a positive impact on young people. Further it suggests that addressing the nature of conflict through first-hand accounts assist young people in making sense of their current socio-political context, thereby challenging their previous stereotypical and prejudiced views of the ‘other’ community.

Lesley Emerson is a lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast. She is interested in research which seeks to make a difference in children and young people’s lives, particularly in the context of their school experience. Her research interests fall into two themes:

  • Citizenship education, human rights education, and political education – with a focus on transitional or conflict affected societies and, in particular, the role of former combatants in education for citizenship
  • Children’s rights – with a focus on children’s rights in education, children’s participation rights and participatory research methods.

Her research projects focus primarily on the substantive issues associated with these themes. In addition, she collaborates with colleagues who wish to apply a children’s rights-based approach to researching their own substantive areas.

Emerson (2012) Conflict Transition and Political Generosity

Engaging young people with conflict through the narratives of former combatants in Northern Ireland (presentation)

Evaluation of the effectiveness of the ‘prison to peace: learning from the experience of political ex-prisoners’ educational programme

From Prison to Peace: Learning from the experience of political ex-prisoners

Why education in emergencies goes unfunded. And how to fix it

IOE Digital5 May 2017

Thursday 29 October 2015, 17.30 – 19.00, Room 802, 20 Bedford Way, UCL Institute of Education, London

For our first seminar in the 2015/2016 Network for Research in Education, Conflict and Emergencies annual seminar series, Rob Williams OBE, CEO of War Child UK, discusses the effects of failing to fund education in emergency and chronic conflict situations. He looks at why so many children in conflict zones miss out on school and the impact this has. Using the Syrian refugee crisis as a case study, Rob illustrates the far reaching implications of failing to fund education, and examines the various proposals for solving the issue, including the idea of a Global Fund for Education.

Rob Williams is Chief Executive of War Child, a UK based charity that promotes child protection, education and livelihoods in a range of countries affected by war, including Afghanistan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Rob worked in emergency response in Africa and Asia for many years, with Save the Children, the British Red Cross and Concern Worldwide. Rob was awarded an OBE in 2014 for services to protecting and improving the lives of children, including those affected by conflict overseas.

Working in the field of education, conflict and emergencies: Professional Transitions

IOE Digital7 April 2017

Thursday 28 January 2016, 17.30 – 19.00, Room 822, 20 Bedford Way, UCL Institute of Education, London

Anna Wilson, UCL Institute of Education

Sébastien Hine, Save the Children – Education Research Adviser
Ellen Turner, UCL Institute of Education – PhD Candidate
Julia Finder, Save the Children – ‎Education Technical Advisor
Arran Magee, Overseas Development Institute – Research Officer

Online contributors:
Davide Coltri, Save the Children – Humanitarian Surge Team
Peter Simms, Children in Crisis – Programme Manager for Afghanistan

The transition from academic training to a professional career in the field of education in emergencies can be full of uncertainties.

The purpose of this panel discussion is to highlight how some of the graduates make successful transitions to exciting careers after graduating from the university and also to showcase their research that has contributed to expand knowledge about educational provision in challenging circumstances. This event will also provide an excellent opportunity for networking to those who are aspiring to pursue professional careers in the field of education, conflict and emergencies.