May 26, 2011
The Role of Civil Society in Peacebuilding, Conflict Resolution, and Democratization
Civil society is an essential part of the proper functioning of the state, helping to initiate, promote, and strengthen comprehensive and objective dialogue between governments and their people. In this way, civil society fosters conflict resolution, advances human rights, and promotes better democratization processes. Because of its flexible, multidimensional, and non-rigid structure, civil society has the capability to adapt to rapid global changes. The purpose of this conference was to gain a better understanding of the role of civil society in the functioning of the state, as well as the advancement of democracy and universal human rights.
The conference consisted of three panel discussions.
Welcome and Opening Remarks
Katherine Marshall, Berkley Center
Emre Celik, Rumi Forum
Panel 1: "Civil Society, Democratization, and Conflict Resolution"
Moderator: Jonathan Landay, McClatchy News
Angel Rabasa, RAND Corporation
Joshua Foust, The American Security Project
Marina Ottaway, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Panel 2: "Civil Society, Peacebuilding, and Education"
Moderator: Katherine Marshall
Mohamed Nimer, American University
Bilal Wahab, George Mason University
Stanley Kober, Cato Institute
Panel 3: "Case Studies: The Importance of Civil Society"
Catherine Cosman, US Commission on International Religious Freedom
Mehmet Kalyoncu, independent political analyst
Jennifer Windsor, Georgetown University School of Foreign Service
This event was co-sponsored by the Berkley Center and Rumi Forum.
Catherine Cosman is a Senior Policy Analyst with the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, where she has worked since November 2003 covering Europe and the countries of the former Soviet Union. She served a senior analyst with the US...
Joshua Foust is a fellow at The American Security Project, where he studies national security strategy and post-conflict reconstruction. He is also editor of Registan.net, which is devoted to Central Asia, and is a columnist for PBS "Need to...
Mehmet Kalyoncu is an independent political analyst. He has published articles in academic journals and op-ed pieces in newspapers and online publications. His writing has appeared in Foreign Policy Magazine, Balkanalysis, Caspian Business News,...
Alisher Khamidov is a Professorial Lecturer at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University. He is an expert on Central Asia and Russia. He began his career as Director of the Osh Media Resource Center (OMRC), a...
Stanley Kober is a Research Fellow in Foreign Policy Studies at the Cato Institute. He is a graduate of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and received his Ph.D. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. His...
Katherine Marshall is a Senior Fellow at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs, where she leads the Center's program on Religion and Global Development. After a long career in the development field, including several leadership...
Dr. Mohamed Nimer is an assistant professor at the School of International Service at American University in Washington, D.C. His research and teaching interests include religion and politics, cross cultural communication, Muslims in the West, and...
Marina Ottaway works on issues of political transformation in the Middle East and Gulf security. A long-time analyst of the formation and transformation of political systems, she has also written on political reconstruction in Iraq, Afghanistan,...
Angel M. Rabasa is a senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation. He has written extensively about extremism, terrorism, and insurgency. He is the lead author of The Lessons of Mumbai (2009); Radical Islam in East Africa (2009); The Rise of...
Bilal Wahab is a doctoral student at George Mason University where he studies economic and political transition in the petroleum-rich Middle Eastern states. He is affiliated with the university’s Terrorism, Transnational Crime and Corruption...