One of our research specialisations in DGSI is peace mediation. Our research explores mediation from a range of perspectives, including diplomacy, multi-track mediation support and dialogue efforts, and the contested existence of an emerging ‘law of peace’. We explore the connections between local and global initiatives, as well as the institutional and policy frameworks within which mediation is practiced. A core feature of our research is a commitment to understanding and promoting inclusive mediation to respond to the changing nature of law. We research ways to enhance inclusivity through advancing women in mediation, promoting gender sensitivity in conflict analysis and process design, and by seeking to find ways to effectively link local actors to global processes.
A major theme in DGSi research has been approaches to making, building and keeping peace. This has ranged from work on everyday peace to more conventional analyses of security and “peace” offered by institutions and states. Through a mix of case study work, and theory and concept-building, DGSi research has made significant contributions to how peace is conceived, theorised, and narrated.
DGSi colleagues have been working – over a number of years – on the issue of migration and its meanings for people, states, and systems. Work on the Mediterranean region in particular has highlighted how emerging patterns of migration have challenged notions of sovereignty and statehood. This research – mainly from an anthropological perspective – has raised issues of the most appropriate level of analysis with which to approach the issue: individuals, families, institutions, states? Fundamentally, it also raises issues of identity and rights.