The media can play a positive role in peace building/conflict prevention. Recognition of this has led to increasing programmes on media/communications and peace building, with common interventions including training of journalists, and development of pro-peace programme content. However, there are significant challenges in designing and implementing such programmes, and even more in evaluation. While some interventions have generated positive results (e.g. reduced election-related violence), evidence is limited and it is hard to make causal links between interventions and impact. This highlights the need for more research.
This review draws on a mixture of academic papers and grey literature. The literature was largely gender-blind and made no mention of persons with disabilities. The term ‘media’ in this report refers to both mass media (television, radio, newspapers) and to social media (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, online blogs) because today both are used as sources or tools of news and information (Betz, 2018: 2). ‘Peace building’ is defined as ‘a process that facilitates the establishment of durable peace and tries to prevent the recurrence of violence by addressing root causes and effects of conflict through reconciliation, institution building, and political as well as economic transformation’. In this review peace building is taken in the wider sense to include conflict prevention as well as post-conflict restoration of peace.
Key Words: Effective communication, conflict resolution, Peace building.