Director's Message
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Director's Message

Thomas Hill

Far too much attention has been directed in recent years toward the pursuit of short-term solutions to pressing global challenges such as violent extremism and the use of violence to achieve political objectives. Too little attention—and far too few resources—have been directed toward peacebuilding education, perhaps the only truly effective method of undermining the phenomenon of violence. The Initiative for Peacebuilding Through Education (IPE) seeks to reverse that imbalance.

IPE engages in field-based action research and practice with local affiliates that aims to build deeper and broader understanding of the delicate balance between peacefulness and violence, and the everyday actions that contribute to both phenomena. Contemporary research has shown that massive problems, such as the worldwide population displacement crisis, can only be addressed meaningfully by engaging with the displaced on a local level and helping them to draw upon existing resources to build more sustainably peaceful societies. IPE develops meaningful relationships with local populations and leverages its position at the NYUSPS Center for Global Affairs to give a global voice to local actors.

Connecting the local to the global—and the global to the local—is a central objective of IPE. Only when actors at all levels truly understand and accept the importance of pursuing constructive and mutually beneficial relationships will we begin to see the emergence of peaceful processes of social, political, and economic change as a global norm.

Please follow our efforts and feel free to share your ideas with us. The more people and organizations we engage in this work—and in the conversation that surrounds it—the closer we will come to achieving our goals.

Thomas Hill, MIA, PhD
Director, Initiative for Peacebuilding Through Education and Clinical Associate Professor
NYU School of Professional Studies Center for Global Affairs