On 04 March 2021, ACCORD’s founder and Executive Director, Dr Vasu Gounden participated in the UNDP’s “Prevention in Action” Global Forum, which aimed at offering a development perspective for prevention and peacebuilding.
The Prevention in Action Global Forum is aimed at convening prevention and peacebuilding practitioners, policymakers and experts across governments, civil society, international organisations, academia, international financial institutions and partners to exchange best practices on prevention and peacebuilding, elevating results and lessons learned at country and regional levels, promote innovations in conflict prevention and peacebuilding, and explore partnerships for prevention.
The expected outcomes from the forum were to:
- Articulate the role of development as the core of the prevention approach and strategy.
- Elevate local results to the global policy discourse.
- Facilitate a space for dialogue and exchange of good practices among prevention and peacebuilding practitioners and experts.
- Forge innovative partnerships of practitioners, researchers and policy makers for prevention and peacebuilding and
- Promote innovation conflict prevention and peacebuilding practice, including through South-South and fragile-to-fragile cooperation.
Speaking on the “Future of Peacebuilding” panel, Dr Gounden was joined by fellow panellists, Levina Addae-Mensah (Programs Director, West Africa Network for Peacebuilding), Victoria Carreras Lloveras (Deputy Director, The Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict) Samuel Rizk (Head Conflict Prevention, Peacebuilding & Responsive Institutions Crisis Bureau, UNDP) and Marcus Lenzen (Senior Adviser, UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs). The session was moderated by Michael Shipler, Vice President, at Search for Common Ground.
Dr Gounden spoke about how ACCORD has recognised that in order to transform conflict, time has to be spent transforming society, which ACCORD has taken steps towards by establishing Global Peace as a means to energise young people and their local leaders. He further noted the increasing importance of city governments in the future as cities increasingly become theatres of conflict and more people move to urban areas.
In his closing remarks, Dr Gounden encouraged multi-stakeholder collaboration and dynamic thinking, in a time where peacebuilding is increasingly coming under threat.