Gender, education and peacebuilding: a review of selected learning for peace case studies

Author: Judy El-Bushra and Emilie Rees Smith
Year: 2016
Full Citation: El-Bushra, J. & Smith, E. R. (2016). Gender, education and peacebuilding: a review of selected learning for peace case studies. New York: UNICEF
Research Category:
  • Primary Research
Category/Categories:
  • Design, Implement, Research and Evaluate for Better EiCC Programs
    • Peacebuilding
  • Understand and Strive for Equity
Location(s):
  • Africa
    • Cote D'Ivoire
    • DRC
    • Uganda
Target Population(s): Children, Girls, Youth
Overview: The overarching question the review seeks to answer is: How can education interventions address gender inequalities in contexts of armed violent conflict and in the process contribute towards sustainable peace? In other words, what do the four case studies tell us about how a gender-transformative approach to education for peacebuilding can strengthen its policy and practice? The four case studies cover a range of contexts, institutional settings, categories of learners, and educational activities. While the intersections between gender equality, education and peacebuilding are many and varied, this review focuses on four strategies through which education providers may seek to play a role in gender-transformative peace, as identified in earlier stages of the Learning for Peace programme. These strategies are: ‘Building back better’ to promote positive gender relations and social norms; Empowering women and youth to promote and participate in building sustainable peace; Invoking positive models of masculinity and supporting at-risk male youth; Addressing gender-based violence (GBV). (p. 2)    
Methodology: In each case, Learning for Peace commissioned research to delve into the potential of the project to contribute to gender-transformative peace in its various aspects. While the research for two of these case studies (Uganda and the CC programme) took the form of an impact evaluation based on randomized controlled trials, research for the other two case studies (the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Côte d’Ivoire) was carried out using qualitative methods at the community level. (p. 2)
Findings: The overarching lesson to be drawn from the four case studies reviewed in this document is that education has enormous potential to influence the formation of gendered attitudes, identities and capabilities, even in the most difficult circumstances. A safe and equitable education system can provide the foundation for a safe and equitable society. The potential is evident at all levels of the education system, and in both in-school and informal settings. (p. 23)

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