Key Actor Analysis in Africa and the Balkans
In 2005, as part of its capacity-building initiatives in the Muslim world, the Salam Institute partnered with the Conflict Resolution Unit of Clingendael Institute and the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs to conduct a large-scale and comprehensive analysis of key Islamic actors in Africa and the Balkans. This project was one of the first attempts to map and analyze the impact of Muslim individuals and organizations working in the fields of peace, conflict resolution and development.
As part of this study, the Salam Institute conducted research and interviews with stakeholders and prepared a dynamic and thorough final report based on its analysis of information received via personal and phone interviews, meetings, extensive literature reviews, web browsing, email and fax surveys. Based on its findings,the Salam Institute concluded that the main contribution of Muslim peacebuilding actors included:
- Altering behavior, attitudes, negative stereotypes, and mind frames;
- Healing of trauma and injuries as well as rehumanizing the “other”;
- Contributing to more effective dissemination of ideas such as democracy, human rights, justice, development and peace making;
- Their ability to draft committed people from a wide pool due to their broad community base;
- Challenging traditional structures, such as the perceived role of women in society;
- Reaching out to the government, influencing public-policy, and reaching out to youth;
- Mediating between conflicting parties;
- Encouraging reconciliation, interfaith dialogue, disarmament, demilitarization, and reintegration (DDR); and
- Using existing networks to connect more easily to other Muslim communities and non-Muslim leaders for support, and convening large meetings among them.