Peace and development research aims to understand the causes, dynamics, and effects of war, conflict, and poverty, as well as the conditions for stable and sustainable peace and development. The subject is based on two interdisciplinary and problem-oriented research traditions that are too often separated:
- Peace and conflict research – which aims to understand the causes, dynamics, and effects of war and various types of conflicts, as well as the conditions for a stable peace, security, and reconstruction.
- Development research – which aims to understand the causes, dynamics, and effects of poverty, resource use, power imbalances, inequality, injustice, exploitation, and vulnerability.
Peace and development research at the School of Global Studies is characterized by the two traditions being integrated and combined in pioneering ways that have become increasingly common around the world.
Peace and development research are pluralistic and eclectic in terms of disciplinary, theoretical, and methodological perspectives – with open boundaries to other subjects within the department as well as to related traditions and disciplines such as geography, sociology, international political economy, political science, and cultural studies. The unifying factor is an unbending and systematic concern for peace, security, and sustainable development.
In line with the department's global profile, the research covers most corners of the world, although there is a certain overweight of specialists in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. In addition to the empirical breadth, research is global in the sense that even specific problems and phenomena are often studied from a global perspective.
About 50 professors, associate professors, postdoctoral fellows, and doctoral students from over 15 countries make up the group. A postgraduate programme, with a seemingly ever-growing number of applicants from all over the world, makes peace and development research a successful “complete” research environment.
The research group is successful in obtaining funding for a significant number of research projects focusing on a number of essential issues and problems in peace and development research, such as violence, gender repression, peace and state-building interventions, and reconstruction, reconciliation, migration, foreign aid, global and regional governance, democracy and populism, resistance, disasters, famines, and the question of whether large infrastructure projects lead to peace and development.