Monday 18 September 2017 06:00 pm

Join the British Council and the Aga Khan Foundation for a panel discussion on civil society and violent extremism in Central Asia.

Confronting violent extremism is a focus of much current research and policy conversations. It is also a sensitive topic for development practitioners and organizations. While the politicization of aid is a large concern, the need for programming to address at-risk populations, particularly youth, in order to mitigate and prevent conflict is unavoidable for development professionals, politicians, and academics alike.

In previous programs, the British Council has convened experts to gather best practices for confronting violent extremism and in 2016 launched its first report, ‘Civic Approaches to Confronting Violent Extremism’. This report was prepared by experts from Georgia State University to build a robust mapping of the field, identify and scope current practice, and provide sector-specific policy recommendations.

A particular ‘hotspot’ for these conversations is in Central Asia where, after the 2010 violent unrest in southern Kyrgyzstan, the Aga Khan Foundation and the World Bank partnered on the Social Cohesion in Kyrgyzstan program to use research and community-driven programs to explore societies within fragile social, economic, and conflict-driven contexts. Through its work, the Aga Khan Foundation has pioneered an approach to bridge public and private energies to work together in civil society on these fragile problems.

Looking at these experiences in Central Asia, this panel will feature representatives from leading organizations working on various issues with at-risk populations and communities and what we can learn from their years of experience working in the development field.

Event information

The panel will be moderated by Alicia Mandaville, Vice President for Global Development Policy and Learning at InterAction.

Panel members include:

  • Abbas Barzegar, Assistant Professor, Georgia State University
  • Manasi Patwardhan, Senior Program Officer, Central Asia and Caucuses, Mercy Corps
  • Rakhat Ismanbaeva, M&E Associate, AKF's Social Cohesion Implementation Team in the Kyrgyz Republic
  • Damir Esenaliev, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) and Researcher on Social Cohesion in Kyrgyzstan

Food and drinks will be available. A form of identification will be requested at security.