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GCSP Launches Media and Arts for Peace Course in Geneva

Geneva, Switzerland: With its Associate Fellow, Honey Al-Sayed, a Syrian refugee based in Washington and Award-Winning National Radio Host in Syria, the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) launches a new online course as a part of its Media and Arts for Peace Initiative.

Global conflicts are increasingly complex. Therefore, we must be even more creative in building peace. With this initiative, the GCSP brings creative artistic processes together with the media to engage diverse participants, cross boundaries, and build a community of peacebuilding practitioners with the aim to make their work more meaningful, transformative, and sustainable.

The first element of this initiative consists of a new online course on Media and Arts for Peace developed in partnership with the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and launched in Washington DC on 25 May with the participation of Karim Wasfi, former Chief Conductor and Director of the Iraqi National Symphony Orchestra. (For more information on the DC Launch, click here). The GCSP wants to reiterate this experience in Geneva on 21 June 2017 and organizes a unique day to build peace around creativity, storytelling and strategy. 

WHERE: Maison de la Paix

WHEN: 21 June 2017 11:45 - 20:30

WHAT: Official launch of the online course on Media and Arts for Peace, on the symbolic date of the 36th “Fête de la Musique”, and during the Refugee Cultural Festival will build on their synergies to convey the best of both events. For this launch, the Damascus String Quintet of the Syrian Expat Philharmonic Orchestra will perform alongside the Soprano Racha Rizk.

Dr Rama Mani, expert in transitional justice and performer, will direct a transformational theater piece with performers from Zimbabwe, Kenya and Sri Lanka. A conversation with renowned cartoonists Patrick Chappatte and Hani Abbas, among other activists and field experts, will be moderated by journalist and GCSP Associate Fellow Xavier Colin and conclude the day.

Alongside these performances, the GCSP will offer some of its guests the opportunity to better understand the power of storytelling during an informal workshop at lunchtime. Ms Hedda Krausz Sjögren, diplomat, award-winning playwright and theatre producer, will run this workshop based on the play Seven that relates the real life stories of seven women’s rights activists from seven countries. It has been toured in more than 30 countries and has already put over 1000 politicians, actors, athletes and activists on stage.

“In a fragmented but connected society and in an increasingly instable world, theatre and arts create a fabric that weaves people together by offering possibilities for empathy, catharsis and a space to address some of the most complex moral issues of our times.” Ms Hedd Krausz Sjögren, an award winning playwright.

In anticipation of this day and as of 10 June, visitors of the Maison de la Paix will be invited to draw on the walls of the GCSP or on paper in the IHEID Cafeteria to express their thoughts on the question ‘What peace means for you?’. The results of this artistic initiative will be made available on Instagram, as of 12 June 2017 and will be presented during the launch.

“I believe that to create a culture of peace, we must first imagine, then communicate, and finally cultivate it. With this new initiative, the GCSP aims at bringing new innovative tools and combining creative approaches for positive transformational change and sustainable peace to occur.” Ambassador Christian Dussey, GCSP Director.

Join us to engage with artists, scholars and practitioners who increasingly recognize the role of media and arts in conflict resolution. Get creative and help us make a difference!

For more information on Geneva launch and to register, click here.

For more information on the course, click here.

About the GCSP

Housed in the Maison de la paix, the GCSP is an international foundation established in 1995 with 51 member states, for the primary purpose of promoting peace, security and international cooperation through executive education, applied policy research and dialogue. The GCSP trains government officials, diplomats, military officers, international civil servants as well as NGO and private sector staff in pertinent fields of international peace and security. With a vibrant, multidisciplinary, multicultural and multigenerational network, GCSP is an incubator for innovative solutions in support of creating a safer world.