Conflict Transformation Through School

A Curriculum for Sustainable Peace

November 2014
More details
  • Publisher
    Trentham Books
  • Published
    18th November 2014
  • ISBN 9781858566443
  • Language English
  • Pages 200 pp.
  • Size 6.125" x 9.5"
  • Images b/w photos

Civil wars inflict terrible suffering and impede world development. Conflict transformation is the process of changing the relationships, attitudes, interests, discourses and underlying structures that encourage violent political conflict. Despite relatively little empirical evidence, the role of education is thought to be significant in building sustainable peace. Getting children into school is vitally important, but what do they learn once they get there? This book explores the ways in which the school curriculum can contribute to or impede conflict transformation.

Using a framework based on truth-seeking, reconciliation and inclusive citizenship, the role of the school curriculum is examined through a qualitative case study of curriculum in seven schools in northern Uganda as it emerges from a twenty-year civil war. Their heads, teachers and students build a picture of schools that face great challenges but are making a distinctive contribution to sustainable peace.

The framework is used to investigate the school curriculum in three other countries that have suffered civil conflict: Cambodia, Rwanda and Northern Ireland. As a curriculum model for reducing the risk of re-eruption of civil wars, it is essential reading for practitioners in the field of education in emergencies and for graduate students of development studies, and of comparative education in universities around the world.

"This book is based on original and ground-breaking research in Uganda, providing unprecedented insights into the curriculum and teacher thinking about inclusion. It is underpinned by an accessible theorization and a very practical framework that will be useful to future researchers and students of education. Additionally and importantly, the findings develop more generalizable conclusions that can inform policy makers and researchers in many other contexts where conflict transformation is required."

Professor Hugh Starkey - , Institute of Education, University of London



1) Civil War and Peace-building
2) Curriculum for Conflict Transformation
3) Conflict Transformation and Northern Uganda
4) The Search for Truth
5) Reconciliation
6) Inclusive Citizenship
7) Cambodia, Rwanda and Northern Ireland
8) Conclusion



Jeremy Cunningham

Jeremy Cunningham was a comprehensive school headteacher and has a background in history, peace, human rights and citizenship education. He contributed to Amnesty International UK’s first educational resources and was editor of the World Studies Journal.