“The Center for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development” (SeeD) is developing a revolutionary way to measure reconciliation, called the “Social Cohesion and Reconciliation” (SCORE) Index. Commissioned by UNDP-ACT, the SCORE aims to measure the impact of peace-building activities while taking the pulse on the underlying social factors that can influence the outcome of peace processes. Although developed originally in Cyprus, the SCORE Index will have real added value only if it can also be expanded to other post-conflict societies. To explore this prospect, SeeD senior researcher Giorgos Filippou recently visited Nairobi, Kenya and presented the SCORE Index in an international workshop organized by the National Cohesion and Integration Commission.
Visit to Nairobi, Kenya
The main objective of the Kenyan workshop was to exchange ideas and learning experiences about the development of cohesion indices from various countries vis-à-vis the approach being taken by Kenya. Other presentations included the Reconciliation barometer in South Africa, the Reconciliation Barometer in Rwanda and the conceptual framework for the Social Cohesion index in Kenya. Overall, the mission trip to Kenya was very useful in terms of clearly putting both the SCORE Index and SeeD’s organizational capacity in the international arena of peace and reconciliation.
The SCORE index
The SCORE index can identify the most important social cohesion variables, which need to be addressed in order to strengthen the impact of reconciliation work. This tool will enable policy makers and practitioners in peace-building to better understand the social context to their work, and in particular focus their interventions on particular groups of people, geographical areas, and social factors where their efforts can really make a difference. SCORE is being developed initially in Cyprus, but experts in the field have already identified the potential for the SCORE methodology to be applied in multiple country contexts. In each case a SCORE assessment will support the peace building efforts in the respective society and/or regions of specific countries. This capacity to use a standard SCORE methodology in multiple countries will provide a capacity to draw international comparisons between different conflict and post-conflict scenarios, through the lens of comparative learning and the management of complex peace and development situations.
What are the next steps?
Given the fact that there is significant interest from Kenya, Bosnia, Israel, as well as the Palestinian territories, the prospect of expanding the SCORE to the region is promising.
Who are we? SeeD - Center for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development
SeeD is a peace-building think tank, with regional scope, which grew out of the UNDP-ACT-funded “Cyprus 2015” project, which was launched in May 2009 with the intention to create a bridge between public opinion and the policy level of the Cyprus peace process. In partnership with UNDP-ACT, and using novel “Participatory Polling” methodology, and now the “SCORE Index”, SeeD provides unique tools for effective and sustainable policy recommendations that inform the peace-building policy debate while ensuring citizen participation in, and ownership of, the peace process.
The SCORE Index is a joint project of UNDP’s Action for Cooperation and Trust in Cyprus (UNDP-ACT) and SeeD.