The JDP

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The Journal of Democracy and Peacebuilding is a publication for the international community of conflict engagement practitioners, scholars, scholar practitioners, academics, students, and peacebuilders, with a focus on the interconnection of democracy, conflict and peacebuilding. This journal, it’s editors, contributors and sponsors are committed to enhancing the capacity of social and environmental impact groups, social and environmental movements, political organizations and communities throughout the world to engage with conflict creatively and constructively, in order to strengthen democracy and create a more just and peaceful society. The goal is not simply to increase civility, but to explore our differences without losing touch with our common humanity. To focus social, environmental, political and community passions on problem-solving and peacebuilding will make change easier, more effective, more inclusive and less painful. In every democracy, the need to join together as ‘thought leaders’ and ‘peace practitioners’ affirms the positive, creative role that conflict practitioners play in transforming social, environmental, and political conflicts at their roots. 

 

March 2022

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From the Editors

Welcome to the first issue of the Journal of Democracy and Peacebuilding. It is indeed an honor to serve as the first editors of what we believe is a unique opportunity for conflict engagement practitioners, scholars, scholar practitioners, academics, students and peacebuilders to speak their peace (pun intended), unfettered by many of the usual publication constraints.

As members of the international community of conflict engagement practitioners and peacebuilders, we focus on the interconnection of democracy, conflict, and peacebuilding. We invite you to take this journey with us. Here we hope to offer a place to explore ways to illuminate, discuss, critique, assess and reassess, problem solve and review our collective challenges and possible solutions to resolving conflict and building peace.

This journal, its editors, contributors, and collaborators are committed to enhancing the capacity of social and environmental impact groups, social and environmental change movements, political organizations, and communities throughout the world to engage with conflict creatively and constructively to strengthen democracy and create a more just and peaceful society. The goal is not simply to increase civility, but to explore our differences without losing touch with our common humanity. Focusing social, political and community passions on problem-solving and peacebuilding will make change easier, more effective, more inclusive, and less painful. In every democracy, the need to join together as thought leaders and peace practitioners has never been as critical as it is today, and this publication only serves to affirm the positive, creative role that our collective minds can play in conflict transformation.

Finally, thank you to all our contributors for taking time to share their thoughtful, valuable work with us.

Editor: Dianne Williams, PhD

Associate Editor: JoAnn McAllister, PhD

Managing Editors: Wendy Wood, PhD and Duncan Autrey, MA

Table of Contents

Just Thinking: The Meaning of Our Words

JoAnn McAllister, PhD
Abstract

Electoral Conflicts and Political Polarization: What Can Mediators Do?

Kenneth Cloke, JD, PhD, LLM

A Discursive Public Health Approach to Wrongdoing and the Wrongdoer

Dianne Williams, PhD
Abstract

Bordering on Failure: A Tale of Discovering the Three Rules of Conflict

Duncan Autrey, MA
Abstract

The Polarities of Democracy from Conception to Execution

Bill Benet, PhD
Abstract

Do No Harm: Compassionate Actions Supporting the Common Good

Wendy Wood, PhD
Abstract

Abstracts

Just Thinking: The Meaning of Our Words

By JoAnn McAllister, PhD

Abstract 

Words are our primary mode of conveying meaning. We string them together to tell our stories and intend for those who read them to ‘get it.’ And, yet, how they are understood is always in the hands of the recipient whether they are colleagues, collaborators, or antagonists. Beginning with JDP’s primary words – Democracy and Peacebuilding – the challenges of being understood in our current social conditions are legion. These challenges are not just with those who have different or opposing views, they can arise even among collaborative groups. Some strategies to increase understanding are suggested here.  The first one is to ask ourselves first: “what do I mean by that?”

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Tellus at urna condimentum mattis. Sodales ut etiam sit amet. Elementum integer enim neque volutpat ac. Sem integer vitae justo eget magna fermentum iaculis eu. Id leo in vitae turpis massa sed elementum tempus egestas. Ac orci phasellus egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque. Aliquam ut porttitor leo a diam sollicitudin tempor. Tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor. Morbi tempus iaculis urna id volutpat lacus laoreet non curabitur. Donec adipiscing tristique risus nec feugiat. Sagittis vitae et leo duis ut. Viverra tellus in hac habitasse platea. Gravida cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis. Ut pharetra sit amet aliquam id. Egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor aliquam nulla. Habitasse platea dictumst vestibulum rhoncus est pellentesque. Morbi quis commodo odio aenean sed adipiscing diam donec adipiscing.

Electoral Conflicts and Political Polarization: What Can Mediators Do?

By Kenneth Cloke, JD, PhD, LLM

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Tellus at urna condimentum mattis. Sodales ut etiam sit amet. Elementum integer enim neque volutpat ac. Sem integer vitae justo eget magna fermentum iaculis eu. Id leo in vitae turpis massa sed elementum tempus egestas. Ac orci phasellus egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque. Aliquam ut porttitor leo a diam sollicitudin tempor. Tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor. Morbi tempus iaculis urna id volutpat lacus laoreet non curabitur. Donec adipiscing tristique risus nec feugiat. Sagittis vitae et leo duis ut. Viverra tellus in hac habitasse platea. Gravida cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis. Ut pharetra sit amet aliquam id. Egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor aliquam nulla. Habitasse platea dictumst vestibulum rhoncus est pellentesque. Morbi quis commodo odio aenean sed adipiscing diam donec adipiscing.

A Discursive Public Health Approach to Wrongdoing and the Wrongdoer

By Dianne Williams, PhD

Abstract 

Punishment as retribution belongs to a penal philosophy that is archaic and discredited by penologists. Our correctional system, whose raison d’etre is correcting or rehabilitating wrongdoers, serves instead to protect society against crime and exact such punishment on wrongdoers that they are expected to refrain from future wrongdoing regardless of the underlying reasons for the initial engagement in criminal activity. This logic assumes that man is a rational, pleasure-seeking creature who can be prevented from engaging in antisocial and illegal behavior simply because of the prospect that the pain of punishment will outweigh the benefits gained from the commission of the crime. This is another assumption that may again, be misplaced, if recidivism rates and prison population are any indication.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Tellus at urna condimentum mattis. Sodales ut etiam sit amet. Elementum integer enim neque volutpat ac. Sem integer vitae justo eget magna fermentum iaculis eu. Id leo in vitae turpis massa sed elementum tempus egestas. Ac orci phasellus egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque. Aliquam ut porttitor leo a diam sollicitudin tempor. Tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor. Morbi tempus iaculis urna id volutpat lacus laoreet non curabitur. Donec adipiscing tristique risus nec feugiat. Sagittis vitae et leo duis ut. Viverra tellus in hac habitasse platea. Gravida cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis. Ut pharetra sit amet aliquam id. Egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor aliquam nulla. Habitasse platea dictumst vestibulum rhoncus est pellentesque. Morbi quis commodo odio aenean sed adipiscing diam donec adipiscing.

Bordering on Failure: A Tale of Discovering the Three Rules of Conflict

By Duncan Autrey, MA

Abstract 

This article tells the story of how I discovered the Three Rules for Transforming Conflict, while working on a series of border conflicts in Ecuador. This allegorical tale teaches poignant lessons about the essential nature of conflict and the existential value of improving our political, social, and environmental discourse. The three rules of conflict present a guide to improving collective decision making. The rules teach us to get clear on what the conflict is really about; to include everyone who is involved; and to ensure that the process of transformation is aligned with the desired outcome. Win-Lose processes are dividing us, impeding our healing and progress, and they are undermining our sense of shared humanity. In contrast, this story reminds us that being in any ongoing relationship means that we are interdependent, so our shared success depends on the quality of our processes. We all win, or we all lose.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Tellus at urna condimentum mattis. Sodales ut etiam sit amet. Elementum integer enim neque volutpat ac. Sem integer vitae justo eget magna fermentum iaculis eu. Id leo in vitae turpis massa sed elementum tempus egestas. Ac orci phasellus egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque. Aliquam ut porttitor leo a diam sollicitudin tempor. Tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor. Morbi tempus iaculis urna id volutpat lacus laoreet non curabitur. Donec adipiscing tristique risus nec feugiat. Sagittis vitae et leo duis ut. Viverra tellus in hac habitasse platea. Gravida cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis. Ut pharetra sit amet aliquam id. Egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor aliquam nulla. Habitasse platea dictumst vestibulum rhoncus est pellentesque. Morbi quis commodo odio aenean sed adipiscing diam donec adipiscing.

The Polarities of Democracy from Conception to Execution

By William J. Benet, PhD

Abstract 

People around the globe have embraced democracy to bring about positive social change to address our environmental, economic, and militaristic challenges. Yet, there is no agreement on a definition of democracy that can guide social change efforts. The polarities of democracy presents a unifying theory of democracy to guide healthy, sustainable, and just social change efforts. The theory consists of 10 values, organized as five polarity pairs: freedom and authority, justice and due process, diversity and equality, human rights and communal obligations, and participation and representation. In this definition of democracy, each value (pole) has positive and negative aspects, and the objective is to successfully leverage the polarities so as to maximize the positive aspects and minimize the negative aspects.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Tellus at urna condimentum mattis. Sodales ut etiam sit amet. Elementum integer enim neque volutpat ac. Sem integer vitae justo eget magna fermentum iaculis eu. Id leo in vitae turpis massa sed elementum tempus egestas. Ac orci phasellus egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque. Aliquam ut porttitor leo a diam sollicitudin tempor. Tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor. Morbi tempus iaculis urna id volutpat lacus laoreet non curabitur. Donec adipiscing tristique risus nec feugiat. Sagittis vitae et leo duis ut. Viverra tellus in hac habitasse platea. Gravida cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis. Ut pharetra sit amet aliquam id. Egestas tellus rutrum tellus pellentesque eu tincidunt tortor aliquam nulla. Habitasse platea dictumst vestibulum rhoncus est pellentesque. Morbi quis commodo odio aenean sed adipiscing diam donec adipiscing.

Do No Harm: Compassionate Actions Supporting the Common Good

By Wendy Wood, PhD

Abstract 

To take good care of ourselves and our world is a universal obligation of fundamental importance. As conflict practitioners and peacebuilders, engaging in ways that do not harm others or the planet requires that we are mindful and compassionate; that we use our words wisely and listen deeply; that we are authentic while embracing the ideals of equity and working for the common good; and that all are actions are accompanied with love and joy for the work we do. Based on social science research, these qualities of mindful engagement are essential tools if we are to meet the unique social, political, environmental and community challenges of our time.

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