Horn of Africa

In the Horn of Africa, we have provided advice on National Dialogue processes to key stakeholders within and supporting the process. We have also provided creative inputs to political reform processes and negotiation processes.

Over the past 3 years, we have been engaged in a series of contexts in the Horn of Africa focusing on advising on national reconciliation and dialogue processes as well as peer exchange between the countries in the region.

In 2018 and 2019, informed by our knowledge base of comparative research on peace processes and National Dialogues, we helped the positioning of key international and national actors vis-à-vis the South Sudanese National Dialogue. Our advice included demonstrating the conditions for a successful dialogue and cautioning against mechanisms that could potentially be co-opted and thus limit sustainability. Our input was provided through confidential and public briefing papers; regular exchange with key partner governments, the UN mission to South Sudan, INGOs, and the South Sudanese Council of Churches; and a series of mostly confidential workshops with the involved stakeholders. We also accompanied a regional woman mediator during 2018 in her mediation engagement between the various factions in the country.

In Somalia, we took part in a lessons learned exercise in 2017 and 2018 to provide innovative ideas for the transition process led by the Office of the UN Special Envoy. We produced expert papers to inculcate new thinking through a comparative lens and produced a paper and participated in a learning workshop in Mogadishu.

Prior to the 2020 Somalia/Somaliland negotiations, we offered creative ideas on including reconciliation into the process.

In Ethiopia, in the framework of our #Reconciliation project funded by the Finnish MFA, we have been supporting Ethiopian actors in strategising for a National Dialogue as part of the country’s political reform process. We also engage in helping to create a conducive national, regional, and international environment for the dialogue process. We advise on opportunities and assessing potential barriers, resistance, and setbacks, and help key Ethiopian stakeholders to exchange with peers from other contexts.