Visiting Professorship for Josefina Echavarría at Trinity College Dublin

InnPeace Co-Director Josefina Echavarría, was awarded a Visiting Professorship to Trinity College Dublin to contribute to the School of Ecumenic Research on topics of Peace, Conflict and Reconciliation and advance her own research project.

In February 2019, Josefina Echavarría visited Trinity College Dublin (TCD) in Ireland, where she held a visiting professorship at the School of Ecumenics. During her time at TCD, the School provided her with an excellent research environment and the opportunity to consult Peace Studies colleagues to advance upcoming publications, which proved highly inspiring and useful for introducing new insights into her current research. With the TCD Global Development Society, students from all faculties filled the Global Trinity Room to engage in a conversation about “Transrational Peacebuilding”, which invited participants to reflect upon their own peace notions, get acquainted with the many peaces framework and explore elicitive methods of conflict transformation.

During a ‘brown bag lunch’ with PhD Students from the International Peace Studies Program, Josefina Echavarría exchanged with early stage researchers who are producing investigations at the edge of peace and reconciliation studies. Her work benefited from lively conversationswith the newest generation of peace researchers who share interests in researching the Colombian Peace Process specifically and gender, peacebuilding and civil society in general.

Before her return to Innsbruck, she held a conference talk on her ongoing post-doctoral work TROPIC, which stands for “Territorial peacebuilding in Colombia: An elicitive map of the epicenter of peace, conflict and reconciliation.”Professors and researchers from other departments, as well as members of the Development Studies Association of Ireland attended the event moderated by Professor Gilian Wiley.  


TROPIC is concerned with issues that arise in the context of Colombia’s recent Comprehensive Peace Agreement, signed between the government and FARC-EP in 2016. This agreement is widely seen as innovative, both in the inclusion of diverse voices in the process – especially women and victims – and aims to address deeper layers and themes of the conflict epicentre. Despite its innovative nature, implementation of the agreement remains precarious due to a divided Colombian society, strong political opposition and lack of attention to relational aspects of peace.

 In this context, Echavarría’s project explores a number of key research questions which arise in relation to the Colombian peace process and that also have implications for understandings of peacebuilding more widely. These include the emergence and sustainability of locally imagined and contextualised forms of peace, the type of international support required to maintain a peace process and what kind of reconciliation initiatives are needed to ensure social acceptance of transitional justice. This project aims at making a major contribution to academic thinking on contemporary peacebuilding with potential policy implications for local and global peacebuilders.

The visiting professorship was financed by the Trinity College Dublin Visiting Professors Benefaction Fund, as well as by the Global Development Society of Trinity College Dublin. The Unit for Peace and Conflict Studies wishes to express special thanks for initiating and sponsoring this invitation to Dr. Gillian Wylie and School Administrator Aideen Woods for all their academic and administrative support, as well as their friendship and hospitality.

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