buildings in Syria

Crowdsourcing Conflict and Peace 'events' in the Syrian Conflict

ESRC Urgency Grant

A database capturing the complex situation in Syria, helping us to understand what is happening; when, where, by whom and why.

The findings will contribute to knowledge on modern-day conflict and peace dynamics, which is both academically and practically of high relevance.

This project aims to create a database on the conflict in Syria, capturing both instances of violence and of peace-making. This database will include ‘events’. An ‘event’ is defined as an instance of (1) the use of violence; (2) a local negotiation or cease-fire; (3) the formation or disbandment of armed groups. These are gathered through crowdsourcing. This involves creating a web-platform where people in Syria with a mobile phone (text-messaging) or internet connection can report these events, as they see them happening. The project has made contact with a network of local civil society organisations, many of which are involved in negotiating cease fires, and is encouraging members of these networks to participate in the crowd-sourcing effort. The result is a database that records instances of the use of violence and attempts at peace-making, and that details the date and location at which these happened, and what parties were involved.

The database can be used to analyse patterns (e.g. why certain areas are more violent than others, or what contributes to the success of a local peace agreement) and it is intrinsically important to record instances of human suffering as a matter of historical record.  


From Military to ‘Security Interventions’: An Alternative Approach to Contemporary Intervention

By Mary Kaldor and Sabine Selchow

Read the full article here

Countering the logic of the war economy in Syria

By Rim Turkmani with Ali A.K.Ali, Mary Kaldor and Vesna Bojicic Dzelilovic

Read the full article here


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Amy Crinnion, Unit Administrator

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Conflict and Civil Society Research Unit, Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE