Positive Peace Through Optionality: Contemporary Peacebuilding in Kyrgyzstan.

Lead Research Organisation: Newcastle University
Department Name: Geography Politics and Sociology


This project is interested in the epistemic construction and
practical application of contemporary peacebuilding practices
in Kyrgyzstan, critically evaluating the imposition of 'liberal
peace', and proposing a reconstructive vision through the original
framework of 'peace-through-optionality'. Firstly, the
claims to knowledge made by liberal peace will be deconstructed.
Secondly, 'Peace-through-optionality' will be proposed
as the conceptual vehicle for a reconstruction of peacebuilding
practices, as a non-prescriptive, legitimate and sustainable
process of positive peace. This reconstruction will envisage
an 'arena for ideas', where the multiplicity of actors and
visions for peace inherent to conflicts in Kyrgyzstan are
brought back into spaces of peacebuilding. To achieve this,
this project will be supported by 'Search for Common Ground',
(SFCG), an independent international organisation committed
to attaining sustainable peace, working on the ground in the
two largest cities in Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek and Osh. In order to
elucidate the construction of liberal peace, a document analysis
will be undertaken examining reports and other documents
regarding their work in the field. SFCG also conduct training
programs, including youth leadership training, civil engagement
workshops and road shows, providing an arena for participant
observation, which will examine both the construction
of liberal peace, its reception in Kyrgyzstan and attitudes towards
the alternative proposition of 'peace-through-optionality'.
The same focus will be pursued also through semi-structured
interviews, facilitated, too, through SFCG's training seminars
and their Youth Leader projects. The conclusion of this
project will be the proposition of 'peace-through-optionality'
as an alternative to the failures of liberal peace in Kyrgyzstan.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ES/P000762/1 30/09/2017 29/09/2027
2065967 Studentship ES/P000762/1 30/09/2018 06/08/2023 Liam James Devereux