Publication details for Prof Nick LewerLewer, N. & Harris, S. (2008). 'Peace Education in Conflict Zones - Experience from Northern Sri Lanka'. Journal of Peace Education 5(2): 127-140.
- Publication type: Journal papers: academic
- ISSN/ISBN: 1740-0201, 1740-021X
- DOI: 10.1080/17400200802264321
- View online: Online version
Author(s) from Durham
In September 2005, adult students from Kilinochchi, located in the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)-controlled Wanni region of northern Sri Lanka, were awarded University of Bradford, UK, validated postgraduate certificates or diplomas in conflict resolution and peace preparedness. The diploma is, we think, a landmark in peace education when an internationally recognised higher education course on peace and conflict resolution has been conducted in an area under the de facto authority of a militant separatist group with their full knowledge, cooperation and participation. We argue that in conflict or post-conflict situations, formal tertiary-level peace education programmes are important. This is because they provide local stakeholders with a safe educational space - one in which they can engage and experiment with the discourse of peace without overtly political implications. Such programmes also help develop peace-building capacity by offering people the necessary knowledge with which to analyse and think about the causes, management, resolution and transformation of violent conflict in a depoliticised, safe and educationally rewarding context.