Global Development Week

Peacebuilding and Development

18-22 September 2017

UNSW Sydney, Kensington Campus (PDF)

Following on from the success of our 2016 Global Development Week, the School of Social SciencesGlobalisation & Governance Research Network is hosting a Global Development Week @ UNSW on the theme of Peacebuilding and Development.

The week-long event will showcase existing expertise in Peacebuilding and Development at UNSW and in the greater Sydney community, as well as highlighting our collaboration with existing stakeholders working on peace in Sydney.

The full program of events can be downloaded here:


Find individual event listings here:

Event Listings


Monday 18 September 

4pm - 5.30pm Introduction to the Global Peace Index

  • Mohib Iqbal, Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP)

Wednesday 20 September

2pm - 4pm Seminar: Experiences of Peacebuilding and Development in Practice

Chair: A/Professor Laura Shepherd, UNSW Sydney

    • James Cox, Peacifica
    • Archie Law, Council Chair, Sydney Peace Foundation
    • Dr Susanne Schmeidl, UNSW Sydney
    • Patricia Garcia, University of Sydney and United Nations Association of Australia (UNAA)

Thursday 21 September

2pm - 4pm Seminar: Peacebuilding and Reconciliation – The Global meets the Local

Chair: Dr Susanne Schmeidl, UNSW Sydney

  • Professor Kevin Clements
  • Ben Larke, University of Sydney postgraduate student
  • Jessica Russ-Smith, UNSW Sydney Scientia PhD Scholar
  • Lauren Tynan, UNSW Sydney postgraduate student

5.30pm - 7pm Key Note Talk: Dealing with Painful History to Create a Peaceful Present – Transformative Peace Building in the Asia Pacific Region

Professor Kevin Clements, Director of the New Zealand National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (NCPACS) at the University of Otago

Roundtable Discussion: Peace in the Asia-Pacific Region

Chair: A/Professor Laura Shepherd, UNSW Sydney

    • Major General (Retd) Michael G Smith AO, United Nations Association of Australia (UNAA)
    • Professor Kevin Clements 
    • James Cox, Peacifica
    • Dr Andrea Abel va Es, Research Fellow, Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP)

7pm - 8pm Drinks reception

Friday 22 September

2pm - 4pm Graduate Seminar: Research Tools in Peacebuilding and Development

Chair: Dr Tanya Jakimow, UNSW

    • Dr Nick Apoifis, UNSW Sydney – Militant ethnography in Athens 
    • Dr Sarah Phillips, University of Sydney – Researching with rumours and conspiracy theories
    • A/Professor Laura Shepherd, UNSW Sydney – Doing policy-relevant feminist discourse analysis
    • Dr Susanne Schmeidl, UNSW Sydney – Conflict-sensitive development research

Key Speakers

Andrea Abel van Es

Dr. Andrea Abel van Es is a research fellow at IEP. She was previously a senior research fellow for the Electoral Integrity Project - a joint initiative of Harvard and Sydney Universities, where she co-authored a book “Checkbook Elections: Political Finance in Comparative Perspective”, which was published by Oxford University Press in 2016. After completing her PhD in political science at Stanford University, she consulted for the Kofi Annan Foundation and International IDEA and was an adjunct lecturer in the Ford Dorsey Program in International Policy Studies at Stanford University. Andrea holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Aerospace and Mechatronic Engineering from the University of Sydney.

Kevin Clements

Professor Kevin Clements is the Foundation Chair of Peace and Conflict Studies and Director of the New Zealand National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (NCPACS) at the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand, and Secretary General of the International Peace Research Association. Prior to taking up these positions he was the Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies and Foundation Director of the Australian Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia. Between 1999 and 2003 he was the Secretary General of International Alert is one of the world’s largest NGOs working on conflict transformation. Prior to this Kevin was the Vernon and Minnie Lynch Chair of Conflict Resolution at the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University Fairfax Virginia USA 1994-2000 and Director of the Institute from 1994-1999. He also served as the Director of the Quaker United Nations Office in Geneva and Head of the Peace Research Centre at the Australian National University in Canberra. His career has been a combination of academic analysis and practice in the areas of peacebuilding and conflict transformation. Professor Clements has been a regular consultant to a variety of non-governmental and intergovernmental organisations.

James Cox

James Cox is the founder of Peacifica. He is a respected voice in international peacebuilding and statebuilding policy with two decades of development experience in the government and not-for profit sector. James is the former chair of the Civil Society Platform for Peacebuilding and Statebuilding, a global coalition of peacebuilding organisations that is the voice of civil society in the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding, and in the New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States. James previously led World Vision International's fragile states policy engagement for several years and has also worked on Pacific, human rights and general development policy.

James was a leading civil society contributor to the successful advocacy for the adoption of a peace goal in the Sustainable Development Goals, and for peace to be an overarching objective of the Goals. He led World Vision’s reorientation of its approach to fragile states, which is still ongoing. He was part of the original design and leadership team of Australia’s Make Poverty History Campaign.

Patricia Garcia

Patricia Garcia AO is a highly- respected humanitarian and human rights advocate with experience in project design and delivery, campaigning and fundraising. She has been appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2016 and was a finalist in the 2016 NSW Australian of the Year awards for her contribution and services to the international humanitarian aid and development sector over the past two decades. Patricia has worked in some of the world’s longest running conflicts and complex humanitarian emergencies, including Afghanistan, Sudan, Bosnia and Burma, and with Rwandan refugees in the former Zaire in 1994, with organisations including Oxfam, Peace Winds Japan, German Agro Action, Norwegian Church Aid, UNHCR and UNOPS. Patricia is also a trainer in Do No Harm, Sphere Project and has initiated and participated in numerous advocacy campaigns in the field of international peace and security and human rights.

Patricia was a Human Rights Research Fellow at the University of Sydney’s Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (CPACS) from 2000–2002 and she designed the Human Rights course for the Master of Peace and Conflict Studies at CPACS. She is a 2017 Rotary Peace Fellow and Visiting Scholar working on peace, humanitarian practice and development issues, including the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for which Patricia has a particular passion. Patricia is currently working with UNAA as Program Manager UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Mohib Iqbal

Mohib Iqbal has been a Research Fellow at Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) since 2015. He is leading the research on Global Economic Value of Peace released annually with Global Peace Index (GPI) report. His work is focused on measuring the added well-being to individuals and societies from improvements in peace. He has worked for the last ten years as a researcher on the economic aspects of peace, conflict and international development. Prior to IEP Mohib has undertaken consulting work for USAID, Australian government, Asian Development Bank, and the World Bank. Mohib holds a Masters of Development and International Economics from Australian National University.

Ben Larke

Ben Larke: Having trained originally as an anthropologist specialising in Conflict, Violence and Conciliation, Ben lived and worked in East Timor between 2000-12. During this period he worked extensively within the State apparatus on processes of reconciliation, based as much as possible on adaptations of customary conflict resolution practice at the village level. He served as the international advisor to the Community Reconciliation Process (CRP) of the East Timorese Commission for Truth, Reception and Reconciliation (commonly known by its Portuguese acronym CAVR). Ben also advised the Government in the wake of widespread civic unrest between 2006-7 and led the technical writing team that drafted the national recovery strategy ‘Haumutk Harii Futuru’ (Tetun: Building a Future Together). This strategy facilitated the return or resettlement of an estimated 120,000 people displaced by the conflict and incorporated a strong dialogue-promotion component. Teams created as part of the crisis response effort went on to be permanently incorporated into the Ministry of Social Solidarity as the Department of Peacebuilding and Social Cohesion and continue to draw upon indigenous practice in supporting conflict transformation and community strengthening. Ben is currently training as a Clinical Psychologist at the University of Sydney.

Archie Law

Archie Law is the newly elected chair of the Sydney Peace Foundation Council. He used to be the Executive Director for ActionAid Australia and worked in conflict affected environments throughout Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Prior to joining ActionAid, Archie worked for the United Nations Development Program in South Africa and the UN's Department of Peacekeeping Operations in New York. Archie was a member of the UN team that developed the contingency plan for an emergency response to the conflict in Iraq in 2002-2003. He also spent four years heading up the Mine Advisory Group's 500-person Cambodia Program. Before joining the non-profit sector, Archie was a drummer for the 1980s band Huxton Creepers. The group released three albums and gave over 500 live appearances throughout Australia.

Sarah Phillips

Dr Sarah Phillips is a Senior Lecturer in Government and International Relations at The University of Sydney (Australia) and a Research Associate at the Developmental Leadership Program (The University of Birmingham, UK). Her research examines security, development, and the norms of statehood from various non-Western perspectives, and the way that these perspectives interact with the norms of international state-building interventions. She is the author of two books about Yemeni politics and has been published widely in top-tiered academic journals, including Foreign Affairs, African Affairs, and International Affairs. Her piece in African Affairs was recently awarded the Stephen Ellis Prize for the most innovative article in 2014-15. She has also been awarded several prestigious competitive grants, including two from the Australian Research Council. Sarah has conducted extensive fieldwork (approximately five years total) in the Middle East and the Horn of Africa – particularly in Yemen, Somaliland, Kenya, Jordan, Pakistan, and Oman – and has consulted to numerous governments and development agencies on matters pertaining to these areas.


Michael Smith

Major General (Retd) Michael G Smith is the National President of the United Nations Association of Australia. He is a Visiting Fellow at the Asia-Pacific College of Diplomacy at the Australian National University, and a former Adjunct Professor at the Key Centre for Ethics, Governance, Law and Justice at Griffith University. Michael consults on peace and security issues and maintains a strong commitment to human rights. He has had a long association with the United Nations, including field experience in Cambodia, Kashmir, Libya, Myanmar, Nepal, Timor-Leste, and Yemen. From 2008-2011, Michael was the founding Executive Director of the Australian Civil-Military Centre, a multi-agency organisation established by the Australian Government in 2008 to support the development of national civil-military capabilities to prevent, prepare for, and respond more effectively to conflicts and disasters overseas. The Centre worked particularly closely with the United Nations, and contributed to Australia’s successful bid for a non-permanent seat on the Security Council. From 2002-2008, Michael was CEO of Austcare (now Action Aid Australia), an international humanitarian and development agency committed to supporting under-privileged communities, including refugees and internally displaced persons affected by conflict, explosive remnants of war, violence and natural disaster. Under his leadership, Austcare significantly increased its funding and pioneered a ‘protection of civilians’ program with UN humanitarian agencies. Mike served for 34 years as an Army Officer in the Australian Defence Force. He graduated with the ‘sword of honour’ from the Royal Military College, Duntroon, in 1971, and had a distinguished military career as an infantry officer. He was a member of the Defence Organisation’s Strategic Review writing team in 1993, served as Australia’s Defence Adviser to the Kingdom of Cambodia in 1994, and throughout 1999 was Director-General for East Timor. He was appointed as the Deputy Force Commander of the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) in 2000-2001, in recognition for which he was promoted from a Member to an Officer in the Order of Australia.



UNSW Sydney

The Globalisation & Governance Research Network represents a coming together of UNSW colleagues who are interested in understanding the complex relationship between globalisation and governance. Members are united by their interest in the following research questions:

  1. What kinds of new security, economic, political, social and environmental challenges and opportunities are presented by ‘globalisation’?
  2. How are these challenges and opportunities being mediated at the local, national, regional, international and global levels?
  3. How and to what extent are increasing levels of economic, political and social integration transforming existing modes of governance and our ideas of the centre and periphery?
  4. How do the ways in which we seek to govern globalisation reflect and impact on the nature and distribution of power and polarisation?

Insofar as globalisation represents the most complex and multifaceted social process of the current era, the strength of our network derives from the interdisciplinary ways in which we consider these questions.

Our activities include regular research seminars, workshops and public lectures and events. We also provide a forum for the discussion of, and advocacy around, University and Government policies that shape the research environment in which we operate.

Susanne Schmeidl

Dr Susanne Schmeidl is Lecturer in Development Studies at the University of New South Wales, Australia. She is scholar-practitioner with twenty years of work experience at the intersection of peace, security and development with think tanks, non-government organizations, inter-governmental organizations the UN and donor governments. She has researched and worked on Afghanistan since 2000 and co-founded two local grass-roots organizations (The Afghan Civil Society Forum and The Liaison Office) and also helped establish the Salah Peace Consortium. She co-designed the Conflict Early Warning Mechanism (CEWARN) for the Inter-Governmental organization for Development (IGAD) in the Horn of Africa, the FAST Early Warning system for SwissPeace, an organization she worked with for nine years, and helped establish the Forum on Early Warning and Early Response (FEWER) while working with Centre for Refugee Studies at York University in Canada.

Susanne is trained Social Worker, Sociologist and Fulbright Scholar. Her inter-disciplinary research has focussed on three core areas—1) forced migration and refugees (incl. protection issues), 2) context/conflict-sensitive, participatory and inclusive development practice, 3) early warning, conflict prevention and civilian peacebuilding (incl. human security)—with a cross-cutting focus on gender and civil society. Her mix of policy and academic publications are in the areas of Afghanistan, forced migration, early warning/conflict prevention and critical peace studies. She is currently working on a book project with an Afghan colleague on how communities negotiate life in Taliban-controlled or contested areas in Afghanistan.

Laura J Shepherd

Associate Professor Laura J. Shepherd is an Associate Professor of International Relations at the School of Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, UNSW Sydney. Laura is also a Visiting Senior Fellow at the LSE Centre for Women, Peace and Security in London, UK. Laura’s research focuses on gender politics, international relations and critical security studies. Her primary research focuses on the United Nations Security Council’s ‘Women, Peace and Security’ agenda. She has written extensively on the formulation of UNSCR1325 and subsequent Women, Peace and Security resolutions. Laura is particularly interested in poststructural accounts of gender and security; much of her work investigates concepts and performances of authority, legitimacy and power through these theoretical frameworks. She also has strong interests in pedagogy and popular culture.


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