The Center works to understand the vicious cycles of decline and the virtuous cycles of progress, and to use the knowledge we gain to educate others. We conduct research and educate the public on ways to work together to address the challenges and opportunities of development and peace in the 21st century.
This century will present dramatic new challenges as well as unprecedented new opportunities to realize sustainable development and international peace and security.
21st century challenges to development
Humanity must find sustainable environmental, economic and social development patterns and processes to reach the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals. As our practices destroy the environment, we also destroy the resources that end poverty and support development.
21st century challenges to international peace and security
Armed conflict and violence have increased in the 21st century, with countries facing state failure and civil war. We’re witnessing criminal and gender-based violence, inter-communal clashes and autocratic regimes turning against their citizens with weapons of war.
The connection among development, international peace and security
When social conflict and violence threaten society’s peace and security, it hinders development. Consider, for example, how a poor person has access to only certain social and economic circles. Research shows this often drives social conflict and violence. In turn, the impoverished are trapped in a vicious cycle that prevents them from growing and improving their lives.
We can replace this chain of events with a virtuous cycle—one where we provide ample security to stimulate peace and development. This will be particularly important for women, excluded minorities and other vulnerable members of society.
The Center’s programs and projects focus directly on the intersections between sustainable development and the post-Cold War evolution of the international community’s capacities to ameliorate the mostly internal armed conflicts and societal violence that are at the top of the international peace and security agenda today.