The Role of Sport in Peacebuilding and Post Conflict ( A GCSP Public Discussion)

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Sport is increasingly recognized as a viable strategic peacebuilding tool and Sport for Development and Peace (SDP) is as a growing interdisciplinary academic field and policy sector.

Sport-based interventions have emerged as useful tools to bring people together in divided societies, and to maintain open channels of communication in highly volatile environments. In post-conflict situations, sport is used to assist in reframing social relations between communities and groups that have been disrupted due to conflict and war.

These activities and projects are supported and implemented by a multiplicity of social actors (notably the United Nations, the International Olympic Committee, national governments, sport federations and sport celebrities, international development agencies and civil society), increasingly making SDP a veritable policy sector. In parallel, academic institutions and researchers have been taking interest in the field of sport for development and peace, resulting in growing numbers of research projects and publications on this topic, which give testimony of the positive impact that well-structured sport-based interventions may have on divided communities, as well as of the potential and limitations of the use of sports to achieve peace and positive social transformation. At the same time, framing sport as a strategic tool for peace-building and supporting the positive development of post-conflict situations still remains a task to be fully accomplished.

In this Olympic year, GCSP is holding a public discussion on the topic and invites you to learn more about on-going activities, achievements and challenges in this field, and to take part in the current debate.

Three speakers active in the field of SDP, from diverse backgrounds, will share their experience, views and reflections on this topic. Dr Alexander Cárdenas, a consultant, researcher and practitioner in SDP from Colombia and Ms Jutta Engelhardt, Programme Director of the Sport & Development Unit at the Swiss Academy for Development (SAD), and Ms Sylvia Poll, former Olympic medallist from Costa Rica and member of the "Champions for Peace" club, an initiative by the Monaco-based organisation Peace and Sport, will join us for the event.


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