Strengthening the mediation capacity in West Africa
18 Apr 2016 - 15:53
Source: © Clingendael Institute

Clingendael Academy continues its cooperation with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and is welcoming a new delegation this week. Nineteen participants take part in a week-long training on negotiation and mediation as an instrument for conflict resolution, conducted by Clingendael Academy’s trainers and certified mediators Judith van den Boogert and Mark Anstey.

This year’s participants list features representatives from the ECOWAS Commission, staff from the MFD and diplomats from ECOWAS Member States.

Institutionalising mediation support in an interactive manner

Clingendael aims to contribute to the strengthening of the mediation capacity in West Africa. The programme includes role-plays, simulations and self-assessments on key conflict management principles as well as strategic discussions with experts and corresponding assignments on the further institutionalisation of mediation support.

In June 2015 ECOWAS operationalised its Mediation Facilitation Directorate (MFD). The aim was to set up a mediation support structure within ECOWAS to promote preventive diplomacy in West Africa through information sharing on and logistical support to mediation efforts. To support the newly established MFD, the Clingendael Academy also trained staff from the ECOWAS Commission and the African Union in negotiation techniques at the end of last year.

Training facility 'Negotiation as a Conflict Resolution Instrument'

At Clingendael Academy, we see negotiation and mediation training support as part of a broader, international conflict-resolution toolkit. Accordingly, and with the support of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we have taken the initiative to provide 'Negotiation as a Conflict Resolution Instrument' for representatives of groups in conflict and mediators of conflict.

Enhancing the mediation and negotiation skills and knowledge of ECOWAS delegates involved in the Conflict Prevention Framework (ECPF) can greatly increase the chances of dealing successfully with conflicts. More information about this training facility can be found here.

Interested in partnering with us?

Are you interested in setting up a mediation programme to reinforce regional conflict resolution capacity with us? Or would you like to contribute your expertise to our training facility?

Please do not hesitate to contact Mr. Wilbur Perlot or Ms. Mara van der Meer.