Global Movement for a Culture of Peace
1. Education for a Culture of Peace By David Adams
December 2005


Early History of Culture of Peace

Civil Society Report on Culture of Peace

UN Declaration and Programme of Action

2005 UN Resolution

The Culture of Peace Dialogues

The Culture of Peace Game

Culture of Peace News Network

Original draft of UN Declaration and Programme of Action

Initial UNESCO Report

Recent General Assembly Debate

Original UNESCO Document

UNESCO Debate on Human Right to Peace

UNESCO Monograph

UNESCO Brochure for Seville Statement

El Salvador National Programme

Mozambique National Programme

In finalizing the 8 action areas of the Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace, the Member States put education first:

B. Strengthening actions at the national, regional and international levels by all relevant actors
9. Actions to foster a culture of peace through education:
(a) Reinvigorate national efforts and international cooperation to promote the goals of education for all with a view to achieving human, social and economic development and for promoting a culture of peace;
(b) Ensure that children, from an early age, benefit from education on the values, attitudes, modes of behaviour and ways of life to enable them to resolve any dispute peacefully and in a spirit of respect for human dignity and of tolerance and non-discrimination;
(c) Involve children in activities designed to instill in them the values and goals of a culture of peace;
(d) Ensure equality of access to education for women, especially girls;
(e) Encourage revision of educational curricula, including textbooks, bearing in mind the 1995 Declaration and Integrated Framework of Action on Education for Peace, Human Rights and Democracy for which technical cooperation should be provided by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization upon request;
(f) Encourage and strengthen efforts by actors as identified in the Declaration, in particular the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, aimed at developing values and skills conducive to a culture of peace, including education and training in promoting dialogue and consensus-building;
(g) Strengthen the ongoing efforts of the relevant entities of the United Nations system aimed at training and education, where appropriate, in the areas of conflict prevention and crisis management, peaceful settlement of disputes, as well as in post-conflict peace-building;
(h) Expand initiatives to promote a culture of peace undertaken by institutions of higher education in various parts of the world, including the United Nations University, the University for Peace and the project for twinning universities and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Chairs Programme.

The term "non-violence" does not appear here, although it is implied in most of the actions listed. A more explicit study and practice of active non-violence needs to be included in education for a culture of peace, including the "conservation and transmutation" of constructive anger, as mentioned here in the section on non-violence. This is foreshadowed in the initial proposal of Article 1 in the Declaration on a Culture of Peace:

Respect for life, ending of violence and promotion and practice of non-violence through education, dialogue and cooperation;

From UNESCO, we added more detailed suggestions for peace education in our first report to the General Assembly following the International Year for the Culture of Peace. A UNESCO project for culture of peace in schools, designed at a conference in Sintra, Portugal, unfortunately was not implemented, as described in the Early History of the Culture of Peace, and although the document itself was removed from the Internet by UNESCO in 2016, it is still available here.

In the first half of the Decade, many of these proposals have been carried out. Half of the international NGOs in the Civil Society Report on the Culture of Peace list their specialty as peace education, and perhaps half of the national NGOs as well. There have been many national conferences dedicated to education for a culture of peace, including what has now become an annual conference in Canada (see

Major textbook initiatives have been dedicated to the culture of peace, including Learning to Abolish War: Teaching Toward a Culture of Peace by Betty Reardon and Alicia Cabezudo from the Hague Appeal for Peace which is available on the Internet in English, Russian, Arabic, Albanian and French editions.

Increasingly the culture of peace is becoming a priority in higher education, and I have recently read excellent theses by Tom Rippon from the University of New England (Australia) entitled The Etiology of a Culture of Violence and Maturation Toward a Culture of Peace and by Gert Danielsen from the Universidad del Salvador (Buenos Aires), entitled: Brasil: ¿Promoviendo una cultura de paz? Análisis de los esfuerzos de las ONGs para promover una cultura de paz. Hopefully, the material in these theses will eventually be published and available on the Internet.



News about Culture of Peace

Historical Perspective

Seville Statement on Violence

National Programmes for a Culture of Peace

Definition of Culture of Peace

UN Declaration and Programme of Action

International Year and Manifesto 2000

Decade and Midterm Report

Main Actors for a Culture of Peace

Role of Mass Media

Culture of Peace News Network

1. Peace Education

2. Sustainable Development

3. Human Rights

4. Equality of Women and Men

5. Democratic Participation

6. Understanding, Tolerance and Solidarity

7. Free Flow of Information and Knowledge

8. International Peace and Security


Strategy and Tactics

New Issues