Wherever there is violence and conflict in the world, there are local people working to resolve and prevent it.
Peace Insight was launched in 2012 to bring greater attention to their invaluable work. Published by Peace Direct, we are the world’s leading resource on local peacebuilding. We provide a vital network that connects peacebuilders with an international actors and organizations—and with each other.
Peace Insight maps and highlights the work of our unique network of journalists, activists, and peacebuilders who are proud to wear the title of Local Peacebuilding Expert (LPE). Together, these 28 LPEs provide in-depth knowledge of over forty conflicts around the world and the organisations working on the ground to resolve them.
Our LPEs identify local peacebuilding organizations to be featured in our interactive database, offer expert commentary and analysis on conflicts and security issues in their part of the world, and help us organize peacebuilding workshops and conferences around the globe. Their work is fundamental to this site, and to our mission to amplify the voices of local peacebuilders.
Peace Insight provides:
A vital resource
Our interactive database is the cornerstone of our work, providing a comprehensive resource on peacebuilding projects and activities. Peace Insight profiles the work of more than 1,500 peacebuilding organizations in 44 conflict-affected regions and catalogs external resources on the importance of local peacebuilding. Our extensive network also makes us uniquely suited to conduct specialized research projects across a wide range of topics.
Our LPEs provide Peace Insight with invaluable first-hand reporting on peacebuilding initiatives around the world which we publish here, alongside articles and analysis from guest correspondents. We also serve as an international platform for local peacebuilders to share their views on the issues that affect them.
Community and outreach
Peace Insight helps organize and facilitate Peace Exchanges—conferences that bring together local groups and international actors—as well as innovative online consultations that connect diverse groups and local experts to explore security issues and ideas for conflict resolution around the world.
We’re committed to sharing the latest information, research developments, and fundraising and training opportunities. To stay in the loop, for one of our newsletters.
Support for the future
Tomorrow’s Peacebuilders are the global awards for local peacebuilding and offer vital support and greater opportunities for recipients. Peace Insight helps identify organizations worthy of recognition and connect them to an international network that can help them—and their impact—grow.
The Peace Insight team
Peace Insight is managed by Peace Direct staff based in London:
Head of Research and Engagement: Ruairi Nolan
Ruairi manages Peace Insight, including the Tomorrow’s Peacebuilder competition and leads on identifying new partners and supporting them in the early years of the partnership. He joined Peace Direct as Peace Insight Project Manager in 2009. He has an MSc in Latin American Studies and has worked in rural development in Central America, at Irish Aid and at the UNESCO Centre at the University of Ulster. Contact: email@example.com.
Peacebuilding Technology Programmes Officer: Joel Gabri
Joel supports the web infrastructure and development of Peace Insight and Peace Direct websites. He also leads on our work looking at how technology can support local peacebuilders, including advanced approaches to mapping and incident reporting and monitoring. Joel has a degree in Peace & Conflict Studies and Politics, with his final year dissertation focusing on how the Internet can be used to promote and assist conflict resolution. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Research and Advocacy Officer: Dimitri Kotsiras
Dimitri is responsible for supporting Peace Direct’s research projects, including Peace Insight and Local Voices for Peace, and runs Peace Direct’s advocacy activities in the UK. He has previously supported programme research and design at the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD), acted as a researcher and campaigner with Crisis Action and Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME), and spent a year at the United Nations reporting on the agenda of the UN Security Council. He holds a BA in Political Science from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, and an MA in Conflict, Security and Development from King’s College London, where his dissertation focused on the nexus between peacebuilding and natural resource governance in South Sudan. Contact: email@example.com
Peace Insight staff work with a team of Local Peacebuilding Experts from around the world
Sierra Leone - Abdul Brima
Abdul Brima is Peace Insight's Local Peacebuilding Expert in Sierra Leone. He is a radio producer and presenter at BBC Media Action Sierra Leone, and previously worked with rural communities on conflict and development issues in Sierra Leone and Liberia.
Nepal - Ambika Pokhrel
Ambika Pokhrel is our Local Peacebuilding Expert in Nepal. She has significant experience working in conflict resolution and peacebuilding, as well as conflict transformation, women's peace and security, and collaborative leadership and dialogue.
Kashmir - Ashima Kaul
Ashima Kaul is a founding member of the Yakjah Peace and Reconciliation Network, a network of Kashmiri professionals working on reconciliation and the empowerment of youth and women. A journalist by profession, she has participated in a number of national and international conferences, as well as training programmes related to women’s leadership, peace and security, conflict resolution, intra-Kashmir dialogue and peacebuilding. She has an active interest in inter-faith dialogue. As a founding member of Control Arms Foundation India, she also works on gun control and small arms and light weapons issues in Jammu and Kashmir.
Jordan - Baker al-Hiyari
Baker al-Hiyari is Peace Insight’s Local Peacebuilding Expert in Jordan. He has more than 20 years’ experience in politics, development, governance, civil society, religion and public affairs in the Middle East, West Asia and North Africa. He specialises in working with traditional, religious, youth and women’s groups to build peace and advance the resilience of local communities.
Burkina Faso - Boris Somé
Boris Somé is our Local Peacebuilding Expert for Burkina Faso. He has been the National Coordinator of WANEP-Burkina Faso since September 2014, where he managed its National Early Warning System. Boris trains local peacebuilders and has wide experience in advocacy and research, including publishing a book on peacebuilding in Burkina Faso. He holds a Master's in Ethics and Governance from the School of Political and Moral Sciences of West Africa, in Abidjan.
Mali - Boubacar Thera
Boubacar Thera is Peace Direct’s Local Peacebuilding Expert in Mali. Boubacar is the National Coordinator for the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding in Mali, and an Assistant Professor at the Université des Sciences Juridiques et Politiques de Bamako. Prior to this he worked for a variety of NGOs and other organisations, and as an interpreter.
Ivory Coast - Daniel Ozoukou
Daniel Ozoukou is a political analyst. He holds an MA degree in Languages and Humanities and a post graduate degree in Political Science and International Human Rights. He has published many articles on governance, democracy and peace issues, and appeared on TV and Radio - including the Sahar International TV (Iran) VOA (USA) and Radio Côte d'Ivoire.
Pakistan - Dr. Zahid Shahab Ahmed
Dr. Zahid Shahab Ahmed is a Postdoctoral Fellow at Deakin University in Australia. He received his PhD from the University of New England (UNE) in Australia. He has an MA in Peace Education from the UN-mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica, and an MA in Sociology from the University of Agriculture Faisalabad in Pakistan. He has taught peace and conflict studies at universities in Australia and Pakistan. Since 2003, he has been working with local and international development agencies in South Asia, in particular in Pakistan, on various peacebuilding and development projects. He has published and presented papers on a wide range of issues, such as Islam, human rights, peace & conflict, regionalism, and regional security.
Zimbabwe - Edward Chinhanhu
Edward Chinhanhu is Peace Insight’s Local Peacebuilding Expert for Zimbabwe. He has a first degree in Education, an MA in Peace and Governance, and he has also completed a postgraduate Diploma in Governance, Democratization and Public Policy at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) in The Hague. He is a Transitional Justice Fellow of the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (IJR) in Cape Town, and a Rotary Peace Fellow at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.
Bangladesh - G. M. Shoeb Ahmed
G..M. Shoeb Ahmed is our Local Peacebuilding Expert in Bangladesh. He has over ten years' experience in peacebuilding, youth development, small arms control, human security, women’s rights and entrepreneurship, and has coordinated and facilitated training, advocacy workshops and national seminars on these issues. He has Master’s degrees in Development from BRAC University, and in International Relations from the University of Dhaka. He has previously worked for Saferworld, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), The Hunger Project and the Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BWCCI).
Kyrgyzstan - Inga Sikorskaya
Inga Sikorskaya is the Director of the School of Peacemaking and Media Technology, an NGO focused on peace research and media training in Kyrgyzstan. A professional journalist, she spent seven years as a senior editor at the Institute for War and Peace Reporting Central Asia, and previously worked in Kyrgyz TV and radio. She has wide international experience in media, conflict transformation and peace research training.
Rwanda - Jean de Dieu Basabose
Jean de Dieu Basabose has more than 10 years' experience in peacebuilding work and has facilitated numerous training and workshops revolving around his work. He co-founded and manages a peace education organisation called Shalom Educating for Peace. He holds a Master’s degree in Conflict Resolution and Peace Studies.
South Sudan - Khamis Cosmas
Khamis Cosmas Lokudu is a co-founder of Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO), a South Sudanese peacebuilding organisation. He works as a Programme Officer there, having previously been a Peace and Conflict Mitigation officer. Khamis holds a Diploma in Communication and Public Relations and is pursuing a BA in Mass Communication at the Cavendish University of Uganda.
Colombia - Lina María Jaramillo
Lina María Jaramillo is our Local Peacebuilding Expert for Colombia. Lina María is a political scientist with Master's degrees in International Studies and International Development. For the past 8 years, she has worked on projects related to peace, security and development issues, and is currently with acting as a Knowledge Management Officer at Oxfam.
Democratic Republic of the Congo - Maguy Libebele
Maguy Libebele is Peace Insight’s Local Peacebuilding Expert in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). A journalist with wide experience in the Great Lakes area, she is a correspondent for Syfia Grands Lacs and reports particularly on women’s rights issues. She has worked on peacebuilding projects across the region with the United Nations, as well as national and international NGOs.
Central African Republic - Martine Kessy Ekomo-Soignet
Martine Kessy Ekomo-Soignet is our Local Peacebuilding Expert in Central African Republic (CAR). She has over four years of experience in the political and development sectors. She has worked with UNDP, UNESCO and the African Medical and Research Foundation. Her work in CAR focuses on civil society and youth organisations. Martine Kessy holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Social and Political studies and a master’s degree in Geopolitics, International Security and International Relations. She completed the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders in 2014, and was one of 100 Fellows competitively selected to participate in an 8-week internship in the United States following the Mandela Washington Fellowship academic institute.
Nigeria - Michael Olufemi Sodipo, Ph.D
Michael Olufemi Sodipo works as a Project Coordinator for the Peace Initiative Network (PIN), a Nigerian peacebuilding organisation that since 2004 has been conducting a range of peace education, advocacy, and training activities in schools and through extracurricular programmes in several northern Nigerian states. He has spoken widely on the role of civil society organisations in promoting peace among diverse youth populations, including at conferences in Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Jordan, and the United States. Michael has also travelled with graduates of PIN programmes, including to a youth parliamentary debate in the UK House of Commons.
Western Balkans - Mirjana Kosić
Mirjana Kosić is the Executive Director of TransConflict, an organisation undertaking conflict transformation projects and research throughout the Western Balkans. Mirjana is also an academic assistant at the SIT Study Abroad programme, “Serbia, Bosnia and Kosovo: Peace and Conflict Studies in the Balkans“, where she delivers lectures focusing on conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Dayton Peace Agreement, and the role of international community in post-war reconstruction and state-building. Mirjana holds an MA from the Faculty of Political Science, University of Bologna.
Liberia - Nat Walker
Nat B. Walker is our Local Peacebuilding Expert in Liberia. He is a peacebuilding and development consultant in Liberia, and serves as an advisory board member and local champion of the Local First approach to development. Nat is currently leading on the development of a conflict-focused early warning and response system in Liberia, while providing policy advice to the Liberia Peace Building Office on the national reconciliation process. He is also an adjunct faculty member of the Kofi Annan Institute of Conflict Transformation at the University of Liberia.
Sri Lanka - Nilanjana Premaratna
Nilanjana Premaratna has worked and volunteered for several years in the country as a practitioner and researcher. Nilanjana has a Master's degree in International Studies from the University of Queensland. and is currently studying for her PhD. Her work connects peacebuilding and conflict resolution research with ground level activism. She is particularly interested in peacebuilding through culture at the ground level. Nilanjana speaks Sinhala and English.
Chad - Nodjigoto Charbonnel
Ukraine - Olga Dolinina
Olga Dolinina is Peace Insight’s Local Peacebuilding Expert in Ukraine. A trained journalist, in 2014 she began working for Save the Children in Dnipropetrovsk. Using her experience in professional sports marketing and management, she also founded and manages Break The Ice, a hockey-based NGO supporting children displaced by the conflict in Ukraine.
Afghanistan - Organization for Policy Research and Development Studies
Peace Insight's information on peacebuilding organisations based in Afghanistan is provided by the Organization for Policy Research and Development Studies (DROPS). DROPS is a women-led research organisation in the Afghan capital, Kabul. It was established in 2012 by Mariam Safi (a researcher and analyst) and Naheed Farid (member of The National Assembly in Afghanistan). Its goal is to harness the efforts of women to bridge the research and policy nexus in Afghanistan.
Niger - Oumarou Gado
Oumarou Gado has ten years’ experience as a professional journalist in Niger, including radio, television and print work. He works for the radio and television group Saraounia à Niame, and he is the founder and editor of a weekly newspaper La Flamme (The Flame), which publishes opinion and analysis pieces. Working in this field has given Gado an excellent overview of social and political issues in Niger. He has also started an initiative to introduce journalism to local representatives of rural communities.
Lebanon - Sawssan Abou-Zahr
Sawssan Abou-Zahr is a Lebanese journalist, editor and consultant. She covers issues related to the Arab Spring, women, Syrian and Palestinian refugees, radical Islamist movements, and Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran. She has written features on human rights issues and peacebuilding based on field research in Afghanistan and Libya, and has also worked on assignments in Switzerland, Bahrain, Oman, Poland, Algeria, Brazil, Germany, Morocco, Kuwait and Turkey, covering high profile events and interviewing prominent political figures. She has contributed to editions of the IREX report on media freedom in Lebanon.
Uganda - Stephen Oola
Stephen Oola is our Local Peacebuilding Expert in Uganda. He currently acts as Senior Advisor on Legal and Constitutional Affairs at the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission, overseeing the implementation of the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan.
Oola is the co-founder and director of Amani Institute Uganda, a think-tank based in Gulu, northern Uganda. An advocate (attorney) in the High Court of Uganda, he was the head of the Conflict, Transitional Justice and Governance Programme for the Refugee Law Project (RLP) at Makerere Univeristy's School of Law until September 2016. Prior to that, he led the Research and Advocacy department at RLP from 2010-2012, and conducted a countrywide reconciliation and transitional justice audit in Uganda.
Oola holds a LLB (Hons) Degree from Makerere University, an MA in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame in Indiana. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Antwerp, Belgium (2012) Oola’s interest and expertise is on transitional Justice, peacebuilding and development in Africa.
Oola led the drafting of the proposed National Reconciliation Bill for Uganda, the African Union Transitional Justice Policy Framework, and the JMEC’s M&E Strategy for South Sudan. Oola is also a member of African Commission on Human & People’s Rights Advisory Committee on the Study on Transitional Justice in Africa.
Guinea Bissau, Senegal - Tomas Serna
Tomas Serna is Peace Insight’s Local Peacebuilding Expert in Guinea-Bissau and Senegal. He has worked in the humanitarian and development sector for over 18 years, and has provided advisory services related to conflict, governance and organisational development for different international development agencies in West Africa. Tomas is currently working with the Guinea Bissau Defence and security sector, in partnership with a civil society provider of mediation services.
Georgia - Tornike Zurabashvili
Tornike Zurabashvili is Peace Insight’s Local Peacebuilding Expert in Georgia. He has six years of research and academic experience on post-Soviet conflict, security and election issues.