Photo credit

“Mine clearance in Somalia” by United Nations Development Programme is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

We provide evidence-based guidance to understand the directions and pace of change in conflict.

Our Impact In Practice

Network for Change

For the project’s second phase, we selected Myanmar and the Horn of Africa as some of the world’s most protracted conflicts. In this phase, our goal is to deepen the Conflict Platform’s positive impact that benefits communities affected by armed conflict. These activities include innovative cross-stakeholder fora through which local community leaders with lived experiences of conflict, practitioners, policymakers, and academics with expertise in conflict and related fields (e.g. policy, security, development) will engage with each other and the findings of our research. Creatively employing modern technologies, we will integrate written resources, including a Handbook on Change in Armed Conflict, with novel and innovative resources in the form of photo essays, storytelling, and web-based interactive visualisations to provide forum participants with a wide array of input formats for discussions during the fora and further knowledge exchange among the participants. Bringing together stakeholders in fora and creating a safe space for communication in the form of a sustainable Network for Change will help those stakeholders to consult effectively, formulate, implement, and evaluate their interventions in line with local needs and the latest research findings to mitigate dynamic conflicts and their impact on civilians more effectively.

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Analysing and engaging armed groups

ONLINE 17 October - 13 November 2022

An online course equipping practitioners with theoretical knowledge of current key trends and practical tools to conduct analysis of armed groups in order to understand the implications for engagement.

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We provide evidence-based guidance to understand and forecast the directions and pace of change in conflict, and thereby to assist in adapting responses to the ever-evolving security landscape in ways which will limit ongoing and future conflict, reduce human suffering, and save lives. On the one hand, this involves designing a practical analytical Changing Character of Conflict Tool with which security and defence practitioners such as UN staff can operationalise this novel understanding of change in armed conflict in their day-to-day work. On the other hand, we develop a dynamic software application that traces long-term trends. It is aimed at enabling decision makers, policymakers and analysts to anticipate the directions of change in conflict to support strategic planning. Read more about our collaboration with UNSSC in a blog article “Can an Oxford-UNSSC analytical tool prove a game changer for how we resolve conflicts?” writen by Svenja Korth.

United Nations System Staff College

United Nations System Staff College

We are collaborating with the United Nations System Staff College (UNSSC) in co-designing a tool to analyse changes in settings of organised violence that is policy-relevant and important for the work of the UN and other international organisations on both the operational level (field offices) and strategic level (headquarters). The UNSSC is the primary provider of interagency training and learning for staff of the United Nations system. The overall objective is to promote UN inter-agency collaboration, increase the operational effectiveness of the UN system as a whole and equip UN staff with the required skills and competencies to face today’s global challenges in Leadership and Management, Peace and Security and Sustainable Development.

Annette Idler is a regular contributor to the curriculum of the United Nations System Staff College and has designed and delivered the course Analysing and Understanding Non-state Armed Groups. The course explores the political context driving the genesis of armed violence and the forces shaping armed group inception, structures and resources. It examines the links between criminality and insurgency, and analyses the different implications for engagement.

New America

New America

New America is a non-partisan think-tank based in the United States. Their experts cover a wide range of topics, for example, national security, cybersecurity, education, social policy, future technology etc.

​International Alert focuses on solving the root causes of conflict with people from across divides. From the grassroots to the policy level, we bring people together to build peace. Experienced and respected, we have a proud track record of achieving change in fragile and conflict-affected countries and territories.

​Danish Refugee Council (DRC) is Denmark’s largest, and a leading international NGO - one of the few with a specific expertise in forced displacement. In 40 countries 7,500 employees protect, advocate and build sustainable futures for refugees and other displacement affected people and communities.