MINELRES: Online Course: Conflict Analysis, The Network University

MINELRES moderator minelres@lists.delfi.lv
Fri Jan 31 18:31:00 2003


Original sender: Lambrecht Wessels <tcc@netuni.uva.nl>


[With apologies for double postings]

Amsterdam, January 2003

Online Course 'Transforming Civil Conflict'

Dear Colleague, 

In co-operation with the Centre for Conflict Resolution, Bradford
University, The European Network University is organising its
award-winning four-week online certificate course in Conflict Resolution
for the seventeenth (February/March 2003) and eigteenth (March/April
2003) time. The course is designed for professionals  working in
conflict areas and students with a special interest in the topic. For
more information contact Lambrecht Wessels at tcc@netuni.uva.nl, visit
our website: www.netuni.nl/demos/tcc/ (recently updated), or read on
below  
Aim
The aim of the program is to help prepare participants for work in
conflict areas, or to make their work more effective by giving them more
insight into the processes in conflicts and the roles that different
organisations play. This program focuses on developing critical
analytical skills in order to ask relevant questions, rather than
finding the right solutions and answers to conflicts straight away.

Content

During the course the participants are familiarised with contemporary
theories of conflict and conflict resolution. Furthermore, they are
acquainted with a wide range of relevant information on conflict on the
Internet and introduced to practical issues and debates within the
field. Together with people with a professional interest, they will form
a 'learning community'. The subjects for the course weeks are:
Introduction to Conflict Resolution, Conflict Analysis and Conflict
Prevention. The students are coached online, and they will participate
through online debates, assignments and exercises.

Target Group

The target groups for this course are professionals that work in
conflict areas and students with a special interest in the topic. Some
examples are: (inter)national relief agency workers, development
professionals, conflict resolution trainers, military personnel,
business people, journalists, students in international relations or
other conflict-related topics, academics and others working for
governmental or (local) non-governmental organisations (NGO’s) in
countries and territories that are the scene violent conflict and civil
strife. 

Intensive Tailored Supervision

Although the course is designed for a minimum of 10 hours of total study
time a week, the supervision is daily. You can ask questions and request
the coaches for information. The coaches are present at the online 'call
center' 14 hours a day. The course is tailor-made: participants receive
personal feedback. They can choose the conflict(s) they would like to
study. In addition they can suggest and initiate online debate topics.
These are often linked to current affairs and student's special
interests. The website is accessible 24 hours a day, updated and added
to where needed. The site is permanently accessible in some way to the
students after the course is finished. 

Collaborative learning

The participant will participate in a collaborative learning experience
in an online 'learning community' of professionals. Every week the
participant is required to undertake different assignments. These
assignments are NOT the so-called ‘conventional assignments’: 'read some
articles, write a paper and send it in before Friday'; but aim to
stimulate discussion and cooperation between the participants. In
addition to individual and group assignments there will be online
discussions and exercises.

Overview

This is the overview of the course:

1: Introduction to Conflict Resolution 

During the first week we will discuss some of the most used concepts in
Conflict Resolution. Different phases of a conflict and the
peacebuilding efforts associated with it will be discussed, also the
difference between Conflict Management, Resolution and Transformation
and conflict structures. The assignments include exercises to search for
specific information on Peace and Conflict related websites and
discussion between participants. 

2: Conflict Prevention 

During this week you will be familiarised with the debate on Conflict
Prevention, Early Warning and Early Action. Many organisations and
governments are interested in the questions of: How can conflicts be
prevented? What are the tools available? To what parties and
organisations? This week aims to help participants identify conflict
prevention opportunities in conflicts.

3: Conflict Mapping (conflict analysis) 

The last two weeks the participants will be provided with the knowledge
to create a 'conflict map'. Theory and exercises are aimed to gather
relevant information in a structured way,  on a particular 'target
conflict' of your choice. This will help you gain an overview of the
particular conflict and the role your organisation is playing in it. You
are taught where to find and keep track of essential information on your
conflict. Theory on 'multi-track diplomacy' will also be discussed in
this part of the course. This week makes strongly utilizes the internet
as an information resource. You will be pointed towards many websites
for
different types of information.

A demo-site with some information is available online at
www.netuni.nl/demos/tcc (regularly updated).

Do you lack internet skills?

An additional 'do it yourself' free course in Internet Skills is
provided for those who are not familiar with the many uses of Internet.
It can be taken at any time, but we recommend to do it before starting
the course. It is accessible through the Network University Website
(http://www.netuni.nl/learning/). Participants will be provided with a
password free of charge.

For more information and specific details on the Network University and
the Program visit our website at
www.netuni.nl/demos/tcc or www.netuni.nl

TimeFrame: How much time, 'A-synchrone'-teaching. 

The February/March course will start on Monday 24 February and finish on
Friday 21 March 2003. There is an optional two weeks of additional time
for debates.. The course is designed for people who want to study and
work at the same time. The amount of time needed to complete the
assignments and participate will depend on your experience with
Internet, level of participation (in discussion groups) and familiarity
with the subject. As most of our participants are working, we strive to
make it possible for every participant to complete every week's
assignments with 10 hours of reading, debating and studying. The course
is taught 'a-synchrone': participants do not have to be present at
certain hours, work can be spread over the week, even in weekends. We
will be present at the 'call center' approximately 14 hours a day, but
submissions of assignments and
contributions to discussions can be made 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Also, you can ask your coach questions at any time. The website will be
open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as well. Sometimes we allow
participants (by exception) to spread their course participation over
the period of two separate courses. In this way, they can still
participate, even if they have to leave for work, to a place where they
do not have Internet-access, or when unexpected emergencies occur. 

Course Coaches

Supervisors (usually two) of the course are: 
Course manager Lambrecht Wessels, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, MA
Political Science (University of Amsterdam '97), BA Conflict Research
(Uppsala University, Sweden, '96), 
Course coaches:
Jeannie Grussendorf, based in Austin, Texas, USA, Ph.D. Conflict
Resolution, Centre for Conflict Resolution, Department of Peace Studies,
Bradford University, UK
Laina K. Reynolds from the same centre based in Bradford UK, Ph.D
candidate
Claske Dijkema, MA Conflict Resolution Berkeley, USA. 
Other supervisors and specialists provide their services as needed or
requested, depending on the course. Technical assistance is provided by
TNU. 

Certificate, New Short Courses in 2003 onwards

Participants will be provided with a certificate of
completion/attendance from both the European Network University and the
Centre for Conflict Resolution, Department of Peace Studies, Bradford
University, after the course is finished. The course will be offered
several times in 2003. In the future a special 10-14 day course will be
available and courses on new topics will be added, including 'Post
Conflict Development', 'Gender and Conflict', 'Civic Scenario Training',
and specific conflict areas.

Network

For the further production (development or production?) of the program
we are currently co-operating with the following institutions: The
International Relations and Security Network [www.isn.ethz.ch].,
Switzerland, The Centre for Conflict Resolution Department of Peace
Studies, University of Bradford UK [www.brad.ac.uk/acad/confres/], The
Clingendael Institute [www.clingendael.nl], The Netherlands and The
European Platform on Conflict Prevention www.conflict-prevention.net,
the Netherlands and the Mediterranean Women's Study Centre
KEGME,[www.kegme.org.gr/] Greece. New partnerships beyond Europe for new
courses are being set up.

Awards for the Transforming Civil Conflict Programme

December 1999 the Transforming Civil Conflict program won the
International Relations and Security Network
(www.isn.ethz.ch) EMPIRE GRANT
[www.isn.ethz.ch/edutrain/index.cfm?service=empire] for the development
of
outstanding high quality learning programs in the field of international
relations and security policy.  See also:
www.isn.ethz.ch/edutrain/index.cfm?service=empire&parent=1999&menu=3
In December of 2000 the Transforming Civil Conflict program won the
Empire Grant for the development of a follow-up program on Post Conflict
Development, to be added to the current course.

Registration and Information

Requests for information can be sent by email to Lambrecht Wessels at
tcc@netuni.uva.nl 
Please feel free to forward any of this information to people  who might
be interested. 
Registration is possible through www.netuni.nl/courses/ or the homepage
of the Network University www.netuni.nl Registration implies an intent
to participate and transfer the fee. If you are not sure about
participation please contact us first. 

Reports
A report of our experiences has been published by Bradford University,
Centre For Conflict Resolution, Department of Peace Studies, Bradford
BD7 1DP, Working Paper 8, Developing an Online Learning Pedagogy for
Conflict Resolution Training,[www.brad.ac.uk/acad/confres/working.html]
Laina K. Reynolds & Lambrecht Wessels, May 2001, available for £2.50.
Furthermore, in the newsletter of the Relief and Rehabilitation Network,
an article was written on the course. The web-version of this article is
available  at: www.odihpn.org/editme/publications.asp (p. 43).

Costs:

The regular fee for the course is € 750 ($ 750). Students pay a special
reduced price of  €495 ($495), participants from the 'South' € 395 ($
395). Additional reductions are available: a limited amount of (partial)
scholarships is available for shoestring-budget NGO's, groups and
individuals in special circumstances. In that case a CV and/or short
letter of intent should be sent to tcc@netuni.uva.nl. The fees are due
two weeks before the start of the courses. 10 February for the
February/March course.


With kind regards,

Lambrecht Wessels

The (European) Network University, [www.netuni.n/]
Email: tcc@netuni.uva.nl
Transforming Civil Conflict
PO Box 94603
1090 GP Amsterdam
The Netherlands
Tel.: 020-561 8167
Fax.: 020-561 8164

and

Laina Reynolds
Centre for Conflict Resolution
Department of Peace Studies
University of Bradford


Lambrecht Wessels MA
Course Developer/Director Conflict Programme
The Network University

tcc@netuni.uva.nl
www.netuni.nl/demos/tcc
tel.: +31 (0)20 561 8167
fax: +31 (0)20 561 8164

The Network University
PO Box 94603
1090 GP Amsterdam
The Netherlands

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