CDA Collaborative Learning Projects (CDA)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)

International Alert

Working Group on Peace and Development (FriEnt)

Insightful Quotes
"We must work to understand the incentives within the UN, WorldBank etc. to better integrate business and peace into the system."
Insightful Quotes
"In some instances, the need to mitigate conflict risks itself leads to a perceived need for dialogue amongst conflict parties. And these moments should be recognized as an opportunity. Getting companies, investors, and parties in conflict to see both the risks and opportunities, however, requires 'swimming against the current'."
Session 23

Business and Peace - A Partnership for Making Money and Making Peace?

Economic development is an important basis for peace. But the link between economic action and peace building is not an automatic one. Models and assumptions have to be reconsidered in order to make it work. With the need for income generation, jobs, equity and trust building across conflicting parties and social divides on the one side and growth for profit and economic sustainability on the other it is important to shape relationships between the diverse actors and stakeholders.

Main Questions
  • Can we develop “win –win situations” where businesses can make money and contribute to peaceful societies?

  • How can relationships between peacebuilders, economic developers and businesses be shaped?

  • Do policies and multistakeholder engagement correspond to needs and realities for peacebuilding and what are opportunities and risks? On which basis can we forge relationships of trust and mutuality?

Key Theses, Thoughts and Ideas

Business and peace – conflict sensitivity and proactive engagement in multistakeholder discussions remain vanishingly rare in company operations. Governments may require businesses to be conflict sensitive and adapt their business plans and/or develop conflict mitigation plans accordingly when collaborating with them in fragile situations. ‘Harm avoidance’ is not enough, conflict sensitivity is required!

Business literacy of peacebuilders has to be improved urgently. Also important is the business ecosystem in contexts where peacebuilders engage and how the engagement fits with peace outcomes at the local level. Incentives matter – what kinds of incentives to provide for businesses making their peace contributions rewarding needs specific attention.

Breaking down silos within governments, UN and across sectors, triggering a culture change and working on complementarity building on what we have – eg working on ESG standards to integrate peace and human security indicators.


Andreas Beckermann
Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany
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Ben Miller
CDA Collaborative Learning Projects (CDA), USA
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Dr Kathryn Nwajiaku-Dahou
Overseas Development Institute (ODI), United Kingdom
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Gerald Pachoud
Pluto & Associates
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Charlotte Onslaw
International Alert
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Current Topics

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The FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum is a series of events on current and overarching challenges and trends in peacebuilding. With the Peacebuilding Forum, we want to provide future-oriented impulses for the development of peacebuilding and strengthen the visibility and importance of the policy field in its entirety.


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und Entwicklung (FriEnt)
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