Sunday, April 30, 2006

New blog at the crossroads of information communications technology and peacebuilding is launched

Photo by Katia Grimmer-LaversanneVia my friend Colin Rule comes news of a new conflict resolution blog published by Sanjana Hattotuwa, ICT for Peacebuilding, created as a medium for exploring "the use of Information Communications Technology (ICT) and its possible uses in conflict transformation and peacebuilding."

Sanjana’s work breaks revolutionary new ground. As he puts it,

ICT is often associated with e-commerce or e-govenrment. A couple of years ago, when I first proposed possible linkages between ICT and peacebuilding, there weren’t many who took me seriously.

That’s changed with time.

ICT4Peace, though as yet embryonic, is soon gaining currency as an important field that’s distinct from other related domains of ICT, such as governance.

I helped setup
InfoShare to pursue some of the possibilities of using ICT for peace in Sri Lanka in 2003. The on-the-ground experience of using technology in support of an on-going peace process is one that was without historical precedence or parallel.

Using this experience, I conducted my research in Australia on Computer Supported Collaborative Work (CSCW), ICT and Peacebuilding. Throught my research, I explored ideas to bring together these seemingly diverse fields of theory and practice into a new spheres of collaboration.

At around this time, I was also introdoced [sic] to Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) - another interesting use of technology to resolve commercial disputes. My growing interest in ODR led me to push the boundaries of its theory and application - introducing it to the complex domains of ethno-political conflict and strategically envisioning future scenarios for ODR…

This blog is an attempt to cover issues on a regular basis that are of interest to me and a visionary and practitioner of ICT4Peace.

To view more of Sanjana’s research, visit his website.


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