Upcoming Events

DGSi Public Lecture – 30 October 2018

17.00 – 18.30 The Al-Qasimi Building, Elvet Hill Rd, Durham DH1 3TU

DGSI lecture Dr André Bank, GIGA Institute of Middle East Studies

andre-bankWars tend to transform not only the spaces in which the violent fighting takes place, but also the spaces close by, including the border regions in neighbouring states. The Syrian war is no exception to this, quite the contrary: From the very beginning of the war in 2011, prominent politicians, opinion-makers and conflict diffusion scholars voiced strong call that warned of a ‘regional wildfire’ of the Syrian conflict quasi-naturally spreading to Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan and Turkey. While not denying the massive neighbourhood effects of the war over the last seven years, the presentation still calls for a more nuanced understanding of the transformations of the borderlands of the Syrian conflict. Based on qualitative field research in the Northern Jordan (Irbid, Mafraq, Ramtha), it is argued that the local logics of (in)security need to be disaggregated both temporally and spatially. Such a bottom-up perspective that takes up the perceptions of (in)security of the people living in the borderland of war cautions against overly simplistic models of violent conflict diffusion and spread.



DGSi Public Lecture – 22 November 2018

17.00 – 18.30 The Al-Qasimi Building, Elvet Hill Rd, Durham DH1 3TU

Insights on governance, conflict and social development

Prof. Heather Marquette, University of Birminghan



Rethinking Peace Mediation

November 2018 – New York City

Peace mediation has become an increasingly professionalized field. The number of support actors and the scope of technical assistance has grown tremendously over the last decades.  International and regional organizations along with non-governmental institutions have significantly expanded their capacities to assist conflict parties in the resolution and prevention of armed conflict.  This drive towards professionalization of the field has been coupled with a new emphasis on a normative and principled approach.  Among other issues, it includes broader notions of inclusion and participation, human rights and gender sensitivity, and the focus on systematic and methodology.  These trends profoundly challenge the nature of peace mediation and the way in which it is practiced.

We are inviting paper proposals for workshop on critical approaches to peace mediation. The aim of the workshop is to explore the effects and dilemmas of the professionalization of peace mediation.  It will bring together practitioners and scholars to make sense of the evolution of multi-track peacemaking efforts.  The overall objective is to challenge supposed common notions of peace mediation (e.g., consensus driven; focus on process design; respect for human rights and other normative parameters; principle of inclusivity and gender sensitivity).  In this context, the workshop probes the accuracy of what peace mediation ought to be and its real-life form.  By looking at the ‘why’, ‘what’, and ‘who’, the workshop seeks to build a picture of modern peace mediation while offering a critical reflection to new realities in the field.


Histories and Rhythms of Urban Violence

Global encounters in the nexus of space and time

December 6-7 2018, Erfurt Germany

The Durham Global Security Institute, together with partners from Germany and Norway is organising a workshop on “Histories and Rhythms of Violence: Gobal-Local Encounters in the Nexus of Time and Space”. This interdisciplinary workshop will take place from 6 – 7 December 2018 at the University of Erfurt in Germany. The workshop seeks to explore the generative capacities of violence and how they transform space and time in the city. We invite papers (eg. empirical case studies, comparative studies, theoretical and conceptual papers) from a wide range of disciplines and a variety of methodological and analytical approaches to the study of spatio-temporal practices of violence in cities.


Call for Papers: Governing (IM-)Mobilities: International Borders, Borderlands and Bordercities.

International Workshop at Durham University, UK, 23-24 May 2019 |Deadline for submission of abstracts to  Borders Borderlands Bordercities: 30/01/2019



Older Events

DGSi Public Lecture – 17 October 2018

17.00 – 18.30 The Al-Qasimi Building, Elvet Hill Rd, Durham DH1 3TU

Brims“Planning to the Finish – Managing the Political/Military Interface.” The talk focuses on Lt. Gen. Brimm’s experience in different peacebuilding scenarios, specifically in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Northern Ireland and Iraq. Lieutenant General Robin Brims will share his insights on processes of military interventions in a diverse range of countries. The focus of the lecture is on exploring the reality of ‘planning to the finish’ and managing the political/military interface in three very different conflicts: Northern Ireland, Bosnia and Iraq. His assessment will consider the different perspectives of politicians, military, commentators and nations in each case. His main conclusion is that theory seldom is given a chance in practice, highlighting the importance of better linkages between academic and practical input in the planning of interventions. Click for more: DGSI lecture series LTG Robin Brims



Organizing against Democracy: The local organizational development of the Golden Dawn in Greece and Europe

— Monday 8th October 2018 — 12:00 to 14:00, Room IM222, Al Qasimi Building, School of Government & International Affairs.

• Dr Antonis Ellinas, Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Cyprus

Using a vast array of evidence to examine the organisational life of one of the most extreme far right parties in Europe, the Greek Golden Dawn, the speaker analyses the developmental trajectory of dozens of its local organisations and develop an analytical framework to show how these local party units are able to grow roots in some settings but completely fail in others.

In the past few decades, far right parties have developed from marginal political actors into potent political forces in Europe, changing the contours of the political debate and challenging the moral foundations of liberal democracy. Despite the geographical spread of, and scholarly attention to this phenomenon, remarkably little is known about the internal mechanics of these parties and the micro-dynamics shaping their organizational development. Using a vast array of evidence to examine the organizational life of one of the most extreme far right parties in Europe, the Greek Golden Dawn, I analyze the developmental trajectory of dozens of its local organizations and develop an analytical framework to show how these local party units are able to grow roots in some settings but completely fail in others. To account for this remarkable variation in local organizational life, I systematically show how environmental and endogenous factors affect the capacity of the Golden Dawn to infiltrate local societies. I then explore the applicability of this framework across Europe by examining the development of the far right in Germany and Slovakia.

Contact olga.demetriou@durham.ac.uk


Matariki meeting at Durham University

6 – 7 September 2018

Violence, peacebuilding and the city

Peace and Conflict Studies have started to take a strong interest in the ways in which dynamics of violence as well as peacebuilding are affecting cities and are processed in urban contexts. In a context of migration and urbanisation, cities around the world have therefore been seen as microcosms of both war and peace. We would like to invite our Matariki partners who take an interest in the ‘urban’ in relation to peace and violence to a network meeting in Durham on 6 September (pm) – 7 September (am) 2018. Topics of interest include:

The destruction of cultural heritage in cities,

Urban ‘badlands’ and violence

The role of the arts in the city

The transformation of urban landscapes

Memory sites in urban contexts

Cities as micro-sites of peacebuilding

Building trust through urban networks

Urban infrastructures and architecture as catalysts of segregation and unification

Relocations as spatial tools to restructure urban politics

The global marketplace and the city

Violence and peacebuilding in dividend cities

The (global) governance of cities

You can access further information here: