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Education That Makes a Difference: Success Stories for Conflict Resolution Educators

Tricia S. Jones

"Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be constructed."

-Preamble of the Constitution of the United Nations, Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

Perhaps more than ever, there is a need for innovative and successful approaches to developing the defenses of peace in the minds of all humanity. We have witnessed the consequences of not attending to these needs in the many and varied international, interethnic, and intergroup conflicts around the globe. Fortunately, there are wonderful programs and practices in the area of conflict resolution education and peace education that have proven effective in building peaceful behavior and peaceful orientations. We know these kinds of education can make a difference. By allowing others to know of the possibilities, we can help sow the seeds of peace.

The cases discussed in this collection present experiences and successes of conflict and peace educators around the world: in Sierra Leone, India, Lebanon, and the United States. In each of these cases we learn about best practices for conflict resolution and peace education and we come to appreciate the challenges of this work.

We begin by defining conflict resolution and peace education. Then, several challenges are raised that face these efforts and suggest ways that the cases in the following chapters help us overcome these challenges. Finally, this introductory chapter ends with a brief recommendation of additional work needed in this field.