(ii) Actions to develop education, training and research for peace and non-violence [Inputs to this section were provided by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the United Nations University, the World Health Organization, the United Nations Population Fund, the International Commission on Education for the 21st Century (UNESCO, 1996), the Second International Forum on the Culture of Peace (Manila, 1995), and UNESCO]

58. Education is the principle means of promoting a culture of peace. This includes not only formal education in schools, but also informal and non-formal education in the full range of social institutions, including the family and the media. The very concept of power needs to be transformed - from the logic of force and fear to the force of reason and love. Education should be expanded so that basic literacy [13] is joined by the 'second literacy' of 'learning to live together' [9]. A global effort of education and training, supported by the United Nations, should empower people at all levels with the peace-making skills of dialogue, mediation, conflict transformation, consensus-building, cooperation and non-violent social change. This campaign should be based upon universal principles of human rights, democratic principles and social justice, and at the same time, build upon the unique peace-making traditions and experiences of each society. It should be linked with other campaigns already launched on regional and national levels, such as the initiative for education for democratic citizenship of the Council of Europe.

59. Educational curricula need to be revised according to the recommendations of the 1995 Declaration and Integrated Framework of Action on Education for Peace, Human Rights and Democracy, adopted by the International Conference on Education and the General Conference of UNESCO. Education for peace, human rights and democracy ought to be transmitted through the entire process of education, including through the democratic and participatory atmosphere and practices of educational institutions. It is important that textbooks be revised to eliminate negative stereotypes, and that the teaching of history be reformed to give as much emphasis to non-violent social change as to its military aspects, with special attention given to the contribution of women. The training of educators, including pre-service, in-service and retraining, should emphasize peace, human rights and democracy in terms of both content and educational practice. Solidarity, creativity, civic responsibility, gender sensitivity, the ability to resolve conflicts by non-violent means and critical skills should be learned through practice which involves the educational community in activities promoting a culture of peace.

60. Of special importance is the equal access of women and girls to quality education in an environment in which they are treated equally with men and boys and in which they are encouraged to achieve their full potential. This contributes to a culture of peace in many ways, including through the attainment of reproductive health and reproductive rights which contributes to population stabilization and the advancement of the social justice agenda.

61. Educational institutions located in areas of significant inter-group conflicts such as those in multi-cultural inner-city communities or war-torn societies deserve special support. Reinforcing existing educational initiatives, this can make available quality education while contributing to a culture of peace in the surrounding community through a participatory process of training in mediation and conflict resolution involving students, teachers, representatives of the educational institutions and communities involved. Participatory research and evaluation and the establishment of a network of such educational institutions are needed in order to produce a global impact.

62. Educational leadership needs to be provided by institutions of higher education, including but not limited to those which train teachers and other educators. The culture of peace needs to be reflected in curricula, scholarship programmes, university libraries and professional development. By linking to culture of peace activities at grass roots level, on the one hand, and to other educational institutions throughout the world, universities can support the development of a global movement. UNESCO's Culture of Peace Chairs and UNITWIN university networks are already engaged in this process which is expected to be supported and expanded at the World Conference on Higher Education in 1998. The Chairs could be brought together at the United Nations University for a symposium on a culture of peace in 2000. The development of a new paradigm of teaching and research in the light of the culture of peace may also play a role in the renewal of the University of Peace (Costa Rica).

63. Training in the skills for resolving disputes through negotiation, mediation, arbitration, judicial process, peer mediation, tolerance-building, conflict resolution and other alternative dispute resolution technologies, including the full use of traditional methods and processes is a key to the development of a culture of peace and is therefore considered in some detail in the following sections of this programme of action.

64. Local and regional training centres for conflict transformation may be established within the framework of existing offices of the United Nations system throughout the world. They would provide training in conflict transformation and consensus-building which can enable local and national governments, non-governmental organizations and people's organizations to lead their communities in peace-building. These centres would be able to make available trained mediators on request of those locked into intra-group, trans-border and inter-ethnic disputes, misunderstandings and perceptions of injustice. They would be linked to and reinforce related inter-governmental, governmental and non-governmental programmes for conflict transformation which exist already, such as the network of Human Rights Ombudsmen in Latin America, the Mechanism for Conflict Resolution established by the Organization of African Unity, and United Nations Volunteers who serve as peace promoters in development programmes. In this regard, the United Nations University and its International leadership Academy could play a leading role in training people for establishing and/or maintaining peace research centres in regions of conflict.

65. Objective research and evaluation of the practices and policies undertaken to prevent violence and promote a culture of peace are needed in order to develop and contribute to a growing body of knowledge on the conditions needed for their success. Research collaboration to this end is envisaged between the United Nations University and UNESCO, which may also involve the International Peace Research Association at its convention in the Year 2000, engaging younger scholars from around the world. The plan of action of the World Health Organization (WHO) for progress towards a science-based public health approach to violence is expected to make major research contributions and lead to far-reaching policy recommendations. For example, in Algeria, WHO jointly with UNESCO is contributing to the establishment of an international centre which will study contemporary forms of violence in that country and which will develop strategies to assist violence victims as well as contributing to peace-building in the context of the culture of peace. Other WHO research programmes are being established with collaborating centres in Colombia, South Africa, Canada, United States, Netherlands and Sweden, and systematic surveys of injury surveillance with a focus on intentional violence have been established in Africa and in the Eastern Mediterranean region.

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