PAXsims

Conflict simulation, peacebuilding, and development

simulating civil war and peacebuilding in the classroom

TLC paperAs promised, I’ve uploaded my paper on “Simulating Civil War and Peacebuilding in the Classroom” to PaxSims. The paper describes the Brynania peacebuilding simulation at McGill, and will be presented at the 2009 APSA Teaching and Learning Conference next week in Baltimore.

Despite the proliferation of scholarly and policy materials on war-to-peace transitions, there is often a problematic gap between the theoretical content of course readings and the practical challenges of undertaking peacebuilding operations in the field. A simulation offers one possible way to address this.

This paper describes an intensive, week-long simulation set in the fictitious war-torn country of “Brynania.” Students play the role of local combatants and leaders, NGOs, donors, diplomats, military and peacekeeping commanders, UN agencies, the media and others, seeking to consolidate, utilize, or even destabilize a tenuous ceasefire in a long-running civil war. Issues of simulation content and mechanics, student assessment, practical challenges, and adaptation to other settings and purposes are discussed.

Comments are welcomed.

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