The Peace Institute supports interdisciplinary and applied research, teaching, and advanced training concerning peace education and peace work. The institute offers students and different target groups a range of teaching modules, including seminars, workshops, trainings and conferences, all of which are designed to contribute to a broader culture of non-violence and peace. These educational activities intend to promote democracy and sustainability. A special emphasis is placed on topics such as conflict transformation, peace ethics, and peace theology.
The Institute’s Goals
Interdisciplinary and applied research, teaching, and knowledge transfer
The Peace Institute of the Protestant University of Applied Sciences Freiburg provides interdisciplinary and practice-oriented research, teaching, and advanced training concerning peace education and peace work. Students of related disciplines as well as scholars and activists are welcome to participate in various modules (seminars, workshops, training courses and specialist days) which support a culture of non-violence and peace. Our programme is developped to promote democracy and sustainability. A special emphasis is on conflict transformation, peace ethics, and peace theology.
In its 2030 Agenda (17 Sustainable Development Goals), the United Nations committed itself to ensuring “… that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.” (SDG 4.7)
The Protestant Church in Baden, Germany, has joined the call of the World Council of Churches for an Ecumenical Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace, and has thus correspondingly resolved to take further steps along the path to a “Church of Just Peace”. The foundation of the Peace Institute as part of the Protestant University of Applied Sciences Freiburg – a decision taken by the regional synod in April 2019 – is a further contribution to the plan formulated by the church in 2013: “The topics of “active non-violent conflict resolution’” as well as possibilities for and methods of peace work are to be included as mandatory educational content in institutions of education, further education, and training of the regional church.” (“Setting our feet on a path for peace”; resolution of the regional synod from 25.10.2013).
Founded in 2020, the Peace Institute of the Protestant University of Applied Sciences Freiburg is committed to pursue these objectives.
In cooperation with the Freiburger Institut für Menschenrechtspädagogik (FIM) (Freiburg Institute for Human Rights Education), and the University departments and national and international civil society cooperation partners, skills for peace education are taught in a framework of practices and social areas, affiliated to the participants professional oder voluntary work.
Peace education processes:
- Cognitive competences are required for the analysis of both political and social conditions of peace, violence and conflict. Research disciplines of interest here include peace and conflict studies, political science, history, social science, and the humanities.
- Communicative, social, and relation-based competences are developed through interaction, dialogue, and cooperation, and are closely related to emotional competences (such as empathic skill). Research fields of interest comprise psychology, education, anthropology, and communication theory.
- Ethic and attitude-related competences are developed through context-related discussions involving controversial peace-ethical theories and discourses in politics and political history, philosophy, and theology.
- Action- and application-related competences are relevant for professional practice in all social and educational fields of action, as well as for the development of personal and self-reflective competences. Students learn to apply current methods of peace work, conflict prevention, and civil conflict transformation. They acquire a profound understanding of the trauma-sensitive implications of social and peace education work, which are relevant in interreligious, intercultural, and international contexts.
Research, work and dialogue at the Peace Institute Freiburg contribute to a culture of peace and non-violence. We look forward to develop a variety of cooperation projects and to engaging in a range of encounters with dialogue partners from civil society, church communities, and the academic.
The new Master Programme of Peace Education, a concept developed by the Peace Institute, connects interdisciplinary research and practice-oriented teaching in peace education – an unique academic course in Germany.