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Education, Fragility and Conflict (Prospects #165)

Guest Editor: Lene Buchert

The 2011 EFA Global Monitoring Report, The hidden crisis: Armed conflict and education, is a powerful reminder that conflict continues to affect the lives of millions of the world’s most vulnerable people and that it prevents children, young people, and adults from using education as a means of building peace and overcoming other socio-economic and political barriers to full participation in society. But how can education and curriculum be used as tools to prevent conflict and to build peace? Should conflict-sensitive approaches to education aim at amelioration or transformation?

This special issue of Prospects attempts to respond to these questions and goes well beyond expanding the literature on the relationship between education, fragility and conflict. The articles in this issue highlight the need for complex understanding and evidence, if we are to fully grasp the role education should play in societal development—a multi-faceted, participatory, long-term process, whose ultimate aim is to empower the people. There is still an urgent need for new international policies for societal development, with a focus on human rights, human dignity, identity and plurality, societal cohesion, and solidarity and societal inclusion. These are all critical areas where education can and should make an important contribution.

PROSPECTS is UNESCO-IBE's Quarterly Review of Comparative Education.