Where do we find common ground?
Incubating Innovative Interaction to Contribute to Peace
A work in process, starting with a conference on 5-6 October 2017
And MBBI anniversary event on 4 October 2017
at The Peace Palace in The Hague, The Netherlands
MBBI is hosting its 8th Conference in the Hague—the International City of Peace and Justice. As a celebration of our 10th anniversary we sincerely hope you can join us at the The Peace Palace in The Hague to work on concrete issues that can contribute to peace. The essence of this working conference is to have an open debate, to engage and encounter and to develop steps that may bring a contribution to peace with a diverse group that usually does not connect.
We aim to:
- Gather thoughtful and expert individuals from around the world who deal with social conflict on a regular basis
- Connect different expertises, experiences and levels of society that are currently disconnected
- Create a transformation through working together on real cases for a concrete outcome
- Nurture collaboration between diverse participants
- Include and promote music, theatre and art
- Highlight the role of women leaders
- Develop MBBI as a state-of-the-art 21st -century peace organisation
We are gathering: a group of people with primary experience in peacebuilding—experts, victims, politicians, and business-people; a broad group of representatives of relevant disciplines and backgrounds; and a multi-tier – top down, the grassroots and in between – to work with us on concrete questions. As mediators we will facilitate this inclusive process and work towards an outcome that has an impact for peace at the grassroots, for the people mostly affected by conflict.
Who should participate:
- Opinion-makers and people with impact that have experienced conflict resolution on a daily basis or have experienced (are experiencing) severe social conflict
- Stakeholders in existing conflicts, politicians, human rights advocates, directors-general of government ministries, mediators, directors of companies, religious leaders, journalists, heads of NGOs, diplomats, government officials, negotiators, doctors, etc.
With this experience and our network we are starting a new initiative:
“Where do we find common ground? What is needed to make a contribution to peace?”
At this working event we hope to develop new concepts, ideas and encounters, which you can put into practice and use in your own community/organization. Our work together will be based on practice and experimentation.
During an ‘open space’ conference we will identify the organizational issues and interests of the stakeholders in peacebuilding through an open dialogue. Stakeholders representing the following sectors: security, diplomacy, development cooperation, politics, NGOs, GOs, medical, climate, advisory organizations, and business–as well as people at the heart of conflict– will work together in open dialogue.
MBBI will facilitate a process in which seemingly opposing perspectives are brought together into one approach, one vision for the long term, focusing on tangible results.
We invite you to join the Congress and be part of a process— not just one event. This conference will be a first, in which we want you to participate and decide on the issues that need to be resolved within and between the stakeholder groups interested in this goal. Our agenda for the first conference will consist of panels of different stakeholders making thoughtful observations and diverse groups of participants working on identifying the underlying challenges including what it will take to overcome them. Our intention is that panel members and participants have themselves operated in the heart of conflict from their different backgrounds and disciplines.
We will facilitate a process where participants will interact deeply, share their experience and knowledge and work together on several pre-selected themes.
Topics of discussion may include:
- Where do we as stakeholders in peace fail? If all the expertise exists, if we know what to do, why doesn’t it happen?
- Where do we succeed, coordinate and cooperate and focus on the people. How?
- How can we create mandates, which are directed towards the people at the heart of conflict, instead of towards the term of government and its interests and the domestic politics of the donor’s home country?
- What do we need to keep stakeholders in charge of their own security, aid and development following their local structures and needs? How can we organize this?
- How could we most effectively organize ourselves and our organizations, to prevent armed conflict and ensure safe, supportive and connected communities for all people?
We will create a platform from which you will be able to continue to follow and exchange ideas and build on the connections you have made. In the years to follow we will elaborate on this and work with you to create a learning dialogue.
What if one could turn the energy of conflict into creativity and new ways to live together, even if all do not agree on everything? Is this not the biggest challenge humanity faces? The knowledge and technology for all our challenges is available or can be identified, but if we don’t bridge the gaps, how can the knowledge be put to use for humanity?
To survive on this planet, individuals need to learn to live together. Please join us in strengthening these linkages to live in positive peace.
MBBI greatly appreciates the support from the city of The Hague.