Media/Communications on Peacebuilding/Social Cohesion/Changing Prevailing Narratives on Conflict

9th April 2020
Author: Idris Iffat

The media can play a positive role in peacebuilding/conflict prevention. Recognition of this has led to increasing programmes on media/communications and peacebuilding, with common interventions including training of journalists, and development of pro-peace programme content. However, there are significant challenges in designing and implementing such programmes, and even more in evaluation. While some interventions have generated positive results (e.g. reduced election-related violence), evidence is limited and it is hard to make causal links between interventions and impact. This highlights the need for more research. This review draws on a mixture of academic papers and grey literature. The literature was largely gender-blind and made no mention of persons with disabilities. The term ‘media’ in this report refers to both mass media (television, radio, newspapers) and to social media (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, online blogs). Peacebuilding is defined as a process facilitating durable peace and preventing the recurrence of violence by addressing drivers of conflict through various means: political as well as economic transformation, institution building, and reconciliation. In this review, peacebuilding is taken in the wider sense to include conflict prevention as well as post-conflict restoration of peace.

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Suggested Citation

Idris, I. (2020). Media/communications for peacebuilding/social cohesion/changing prevailing narratives on conflict. K4D Helpdesk Report 781. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.


9th April 2020


Continent: Global