Just Peace Governance

In 2011 PRIF started its new research pro­gramme "Just Peace Governance". Under this title PRIF analyses the tensions between these three terms/concepts which have always had con­sider­able theoretical sig­nifi­cance and pra­xeological outreach for peace and conflict research. As in the case of “Antinomies of Democratic Peace”, PRIF seeks to reveal hid­den frictions and contra­dictions within as well as between the three concepts. The aim is to find out under what con­ditions implicit or explicit ideas of justice held by political stake­holders lead to violent con­flicts and under what circum­stances they can form the basis for sustainable peace.

The research program focuses on justice-related conflicts and the ways in which peace and justice can be achieved at the same time. It starts from the as­sumption that although peace and justice are equally important political values, they never­theless compete with each other and come into conflict from time to time. Some argue that justice claims have to be restricted after civil war if peace is to be achieved through re­conciliation; others maintain that peace can be breached in order to promote justice. We under­stand Just Peace Governance as a form of political action by means of which actors strive towards attaining sus­tainable peace by considering justice related issues and con­structively managing justice conflicts.

In order to contribute to this end, PRIF’s research department analyze in their particular field of expertise to what extent conflicts are determined by matters of justice and under what conditions particular forms of governance enable a peaceful manage­ment of justice-related conflicts. Three generic forms of conflict are considered: (1) conflicts that arise from global power transition and the rise of new powers, (2) conflicts that stem from competing norms and ideas and (3) conflicts that emerge with the development and trans­formation of governance insti­tutions.

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Just Peace Governance: Research Program of the Peace Research Institute Frankfurt, PRIF Working Papers, No.01, 2011, Frankfurt/M.