Top message: a by unscarred
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peace communications thru google
Insufficient evidence exists to confirm the utility of programs that make use of communication to ameliorate conflict. We do not know how such peace communication intervention efforts influence variables relevant to ending conflict, building and sustaining peace between the North and South, and as is most relevant today, between groups locked in ethnopolitical conflicts. For example, have Israeli and Palestinian children who watched the television programs Israeli/Palestinian Sesame Street, which attempt to mediate contact between the two groups, developed more positive attitudes towards one another? If so, if and how could such a change in attitudes have actually helped ameliorate the Israeli Palestinian conflict? Could it have led these children to change their political preferences towards making peace with one another? Would such a change lead them to go out on the street and protest for policies more conducive to compromise with one another? And would or could such protests have resulted in a change in policy that would actually make or help to make peace? Billions of dollars continue to be spent by intergovernmental organizations, affiliated NGOs and private donors worldwide to implement these programs despite the lack of evidence for the actual impact of these efforts. Such funding, not to mention institutional capacities involved in their implementation begs the need for evaluations to confirm or refute their utility. This paper advocates that peace communication programs be evaluated. It discusses the current state of evaluations, emphasizing the inadequacy of appropriate measures for doing so, and proposes the development of new measures for their evaluation. I begin the paper with the observation that programs that attempt to end conflict, build and sustain peace use a wide range of approaches based upon different assumptions about the root causes of a given conflict. Adopted approaches have assumed theories of modernization, democratic peace, knowledge gap, socio-economic inequality, and prejudice. In this paper I categorize these different approaches, and critically evaluate the problematic assumptions behind some of them. I recommend theories about social groups and structural inequality be applied towards the design of these programs as an alternative to past approaches, and outline new measures for their evaluation. I conclude the paper by advocating that these measures be adopted by future efforts to evaluate the efficacy of peace communication programs.
- Re: a by unscarred