Violent conflict remains one of the world's biggest challenges. War shatters communities, forcing people to flee their homes – destroying lives and livelihoods, and blocking access to health and education. The result is a cycle of suffering, poverty, injustice and more violence.
- Over 1.6 billion people around the world live in conflict-affected contexts.
- By 2030 it is estimated that more than 60% of the world’s extreme poor will live in conflict-affected situations.
- The economic impact of violence on the global economy in 2017 was $14.3 trillion, or $1,953 for every person.
- 1 in every 113 people world-wide are refugees - the highest number of people displaced from their homes at any time since the Second World War.
- Yet, the world spends a fraction (0.6%) on peacebuilding compared with what it spends on the military.
Military responses alone do not provide solutions
Worldwide investment in development, diplomacy and peacebuilding falls dramatically behind military expenditure. Globally, we seem unable to protect people, prevent war or resolve conflicts peacefully.
Conflicts are usually viewed in an over-simplistic way. Responses are often crisis-driven and short-term with decisions made remotely, without involving the people affected.
Limited long-term peacebuilding vision
The violation of human rights and civil liberties lies at the heart of many violent conflicts. Unmet social, political and economic needs may provoke opposition and civil unrest.
Simply ending violence is not the same as transforming conflict – without addressing the underlying causes of conflict then violence is likely to occur.
Establishing a sustainable peace often requires a long process of supporting dialogue, repairing relationships, and addressing the root causes of conflict. Working with all those involved in and affected by a conflict is critical to bring about a lasting change.