Conflict Prevention Models 

29th April 2022
Author: Luke Kelly

This rapid literature review finds that conflict prevention is a broad concept that is undertaken through a number of methods and instruments. Prevention models and strategies agree that prevention should address both long- and short-term causes of conflict. The literature notes that because of the large variety of programmes and the complex causes of conflict, it has been difficult to collate and compare evidence on what works in a systematic manner. Large donors and institutions such as the UN and US conceive of conflict prevention as broad and multi-faceted. Most distinguish between structural prevention, focusing on the long-term causes of grievances and disputes in inequality, marginalisation, injustice, poor governance etc.; direct prevention, focused on early warning systems, diplomacy, mediation and other measures in situations deemed likely to turn into conflict; and systemic prevention, which also considers the transnational influences on conflict such as arms sales.

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Suggested Citation

Kelly, L. (2022). Conflict prevention models. K4D Helpdesk Report 1142. Institute of Development Studies. DOI: 10.19088/K4D.2022.084


29th April 2022


Continent: Global