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Über dieses Buch

This book explores hybrid peacebuilding in Asia, focusing on local intermediaries bridging the gaps between incumbent governments and insurgents, national leadership and the grassroots constituency, and local stakeholders and international intervenors. The contributors shed light on the functions of rebel gatekeepers in Bangsamoro, the Philippines, and Buddhist Peace monks in Cambodia to illustrate the mechanism of dialogue platforms through which gaps are filled and the nature of hybrid peace is negotiated. The book also discusses the dangers of hybrid peacebuilding by examining the cases of India and Indonesia where national level illiberal peace was achieved at the expense of welfare of minority groups. They suggest a possible role of outsiders in hybrid peacebuilding and mutually beneficial partnership between them and local intermediaries.



Chapter 1. Introduction

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the book including the objectives, the focuses and the significance of the study. It also provides definitions of key concepts used in this volume, such as ‘relational dialogue platforms,’ ‘bridge-builders’ and ‘hybrid peacebuilding.’ It puts forward a main argument of the study; that is, institutionalisation of a set of multi-layered platforms for continued dialogues across different levels and sectors in a contested society as well as between local stakeholders and outside intervenors is a key to effective and sustainable peacebuilding. It also argues that hybrid peacebuilding should be understood as a continuous process of negotiation and mediation among the relevant stakeholders both within and outside the contested society to define, refine, shape and reshape a consensus about the emerging order.
Yuji Uesugi

Chapter 2. Asian Peacebuilding: Theory and Practice

This chapter introduces the theory and practice of peacebuilding in Asia. Since an understanding of conflict in Asia is crucial for a better understanding of peacebuilding issues, this chapter delves into the causes and nature of intra-state conflicts in the region. This segment highlights the facts that Asian states are not weak and often conflicts are caused by the overreach of the state. This minimises the need for state-building, one of the cornerstones of liberal peacebuilding. This chapter makes two main arguments: (1) due to the existence of a vibrant civil society, the mid-space could be utilised as the peacebuilding hub in Asia, and (2) since the states are strong in Asia, and there is no need for state-building, peacebuilding actors should return to what we call ‘true’ hybrid peacebuilding, which places multi-level and multi-sectoral bridge-building at the heart of intervention.
S. I. Keethaponcalan

Chapter 3. A Typology of Mid-Space Local Bridge-Builders

This chapter develops a typology of ‘mid-space local bridge-builders’ who move across different cleavages in a conflict-prone society to facilitate dialogue among competing stakeholders. It employs relevant concepts such as gatekeepers and spoilers to connect the dots between the outcomes of peacebuilding and the roles and functions that ‘mid-space local bridge-builders’ can play in a peace process. Gatekeepers hold keys to three different gateways: (1) horizontal (between contending communities), (2) vertical (between the national/top leaders and the grassroots/bottom of the society) and (3) diagonal (between local and international actors) gates. Under certain circumstances and by performing specific intermediary functions, gatekeepers can bridge horizontal, vertical and diagonal gaps, effectively turning to ‘mid-space local bridge-builders’. This chapter argues that bridge-building is done through ‘relational dialogue platforms’ on which different stakeholders meet and shape the nature of hybrid peacebuilding, and it discusses the conceptual models for such platforms.
Yuji Uesugi, Megumi Kagawa

Chapter 4. Roles of Rebel Gatekeepers in Mid-Space Peacebuilding: A Case Study of Bangsamoro

To seek an alternative paradigm to liberal peacebuilding, this Bangsamoro case study explores how a transformative relationship in the mid-space could be nurtured between rebel groups in a conflict-affected society. Based on ground data collected first-hand in the southern Philippines, this case study focuses on rebel gatekeepers as bridge-builders. What roles do rebel gatekeepers play to mitigate a local armed conflict in vertical and horizontal gaps? What are the elements and conditions that obstruct or enhance a transformative relationship among gatekeepers across different communities? Why do some rebel gatekeepers split and become spoilers? This case study illustrates that ‘hybridity’ in peacebuilding is not only about alternative players and roles in the mid-space but also about their strategy against political violence. One practical way forward can involve harnessing transformative relationships and creating relational dialogue platforms among mid-space gatekeepers. By so doing, they serve as bridge-builders.
Megumi Kagawa

Chapter 5. Roles of Religious Leaders as Bridge-Builders: A Case Study of Cambodia

This chapter explores the roles of religious leaders as bridge-builders in conflict-affected societies by examining the peace activities of Cambodian Buddhist monks. It presents the forms of social bridges that the monks have developed by utilising their religious legitimacy, local knowledge, and social networks. The Buddhist monks play significant roles in building a horizontal bridge, redressing the public’s misunderstanding of the minorities’ demands and activities, delivering accurate information to different social groups, and reducing people’s reluctance or fear about expressing their support. Then it analyses the hybrid nature of the peacebuilding programmes developed by the monks. Many principles and operational features of these programmes incorporate international approaches to peacebuilding, Buddhist principles and philosophy, as well as local cosmologies and rituals. Such hybridity is an outcome of Buddhist monks’ efforts to help the public understand the objectives of their activities and reduce the perceived barriers which prevent their participation.
SungYong Lee

Chapter 6. Illiberal Peacebuilding in India and Indonesia: The Dangers of the Hybrid Approach

In both India and Indonesia, which have witnessed extensive violent identity-based conflicts, national and local governments, along with local leaders and communities, have together resolved these conflicts so that large-scale violence has become rare. While reducing the potential for large-scale violence, the bargains struck between some local leaders and state actors have established a highly hybrid form of peace. Greater weight has been given to more pragmatic approaches to reducing conflict rather than priorities of human rights, justice, equality and good governance. The two cases show the dangers of hybrid peacebuilding resulting in illiberal peacebuilding. Although taking a blend of ‘international’ and local strategies to end conflict has built peace and avoided the worst violence in these areas, they have simultaneously facilitated ongoing low-level insurgency and violence against vulnerable groups. The lack of more liberal forms of peacebuilding leaves the potential for further large-scale conflict to occur in the future.
Chris Wilson

Chapter 7. Conclusion

To create an environment within which mid-space local gatekeepers can play a constructive role in peace processes, it is important to identify bridge-builders who are capable of playing, connecting, integrating and transforming roles in divided societies. Their success will be determined by whether they utilise hybrid peacebuilding drawing on local culture and customs so that they enjoy ‘locally grounded legitimacy’. This concluding chapter recapitulates the main argument of the book, which is that the institutionalisation of a set of multi-layered platforms or spaces for dialogue across multiple cleavages and between local stakeholders and outside intervenors is critical to the development of locally grounded legitimacy, which is a key to effective and sustainable hybrid peacebuilding.
Kevin P. Clements, Yuji Uesugi


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