Religion and Peacebuilding in Asia
The University of Winchester is carrying out high-impact religion and peacebuilding work in India, Nepal and MyanmarView content
About the projects
The University of Winchester's high-impact Centre for Religion, Reconciliation and Peace (CRRP) has been carrying out religion and peacebuilding research in various countries across Asia.
Since 2015, staff from CRRP have been carrying out research and supporting peacebuilding projects across Myanmar, carried out by the faith-based organisation Religions for Peace Myanmar. Work has included carrying out conflict assessments, peacebuilding project design and implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of projects as well as delivering training and workshops on dialogue skills, interfaith dialogue, conflict analysis, and religion and peacebuilding. Areas of focus include Kyapuk Pyu and Mrauk U in Rakhine; Pyay and Meiktila in Central Myanmar, as well as locations in Chin and Kachin.
Data from this research have informed a number of reports and publications, and resulted in the design of the first risk assessment framework for project design and implementation focussing specifically on religion in peacebuilding projects and initiatives. The downloadable risk assessment framework can be found HERE.
Between 2011 and 2015, Dr Mark Owen and Professor Anna King carried out five periods of fieldwork in Nepal with religious organisations and NGOs. They published journal articles and conference papers, submitted a report to the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction, and ran a series of consultative workshops and a national conference in Nepal. The April 2015 earthquake shifted the focus from peacebuilding to disaster recovery, but Dr Owen and Prof. King continued their work there in 2016. In 2019 they partnered with Lumbini Development Trust and the government of Nepal to host its second international conference on ‘Religion and Culture in Conflict and Peace: Reconciliation and Peacebuilding in South Asia in 2019’, in the holy pilgrimage centre of Lumbini, birthplace of the historical Buddha.
This project was one of the University's highlight case studies for REF 2014. For more information on the project Religious Peacebuilding in Nepal, visit the REF website.
The CRRP has an MOU with the University Dev Sanskriti Vishwavidyayala (DSV) in Haridwar, north India. In January 2020 we will be partnering on a conference taking place at DSV on ‘Higher Education and the Sustainable Development Goals’, a subject extremely close to the heart and strategic vision of the University of Winchester. At the conference, DSV will also launch its own research centre, focussing on Religious Peacebuilding in Asian Culture, Religion and Philosophy, an initiative that has been supported by CRRP, with Dr Owen acting as the Honorary Director.
For further information on any of these projects, contact the Principal Investigator, Dr Mark Owen, Director of CRRP.