Donor to the Project: GIZ - German Development Cooperation
Implementing Party: SeeD (Contracted by Pro Public)
Dates: 13/09/2014 - 13/04/2015
Nepal is the first Asian country where the SCORE Index was implemented in 2014-2015. The country is a kaleidoscope of social groups, home to 125 ethnicities and castes and 123 different languages. In 2013, the National Planning Commission of Nepal included Infrastructure for Peace as a national development goal in its 13th Approach Paper 2013-2016. To support the government and other stakeholders in developing policies and plans accordingly, the NGO Pro Public, Forum for the Protection of Public Interest, with the support of ZFD/GIZ, invited SeeD to implement the SCORE in Nepal.
In Nepal, there are a variety of infrastructures for peace at different levels of society: The Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction (MoPR) and its Peace Focal Points and Conflict Management Division; the Local Peace Committees (LPCs), Community Mediation Committees, Dialogue Facilitator Pools in the communities, and informal infrastructures for peace like the traditional Badghar and Panchyat dispute resolution mechanisms. Although some evaluations of these respective infrastructures for peace exist, the perspective of the people who suffer from conflict remains largely undocumented. In order to capture people’s experience of peace and conflict in multiple dimensions of their lives, the SCORE Index was expanded and calibrated to the context. In this study, the Index’ components on ‘social cohesion’ and ‘reconciliation’ were used to measure ‘citizen-state peace’ and ‘inter-community peace’ respectively. In addition, three other dimensions were assessed: Intra-personal peace, interpersonal peace, and material peace. To examine the areas with highest conflict potential in the flatlands and the hills, the SCORE Index in Nepal involved more than 30 different groups, including political, ethnic, religious, and caste identities in its research.
A key finding was that the respondents in this sample (N=1177) scored relatively high on intra-personal and inter-community peace, while low scores were found for the citizen-state peace dimension. Importantly, low national civic life satisfaction and low intrapersonal peace predicted higher willingness to use violence as means of social and political change.
Recommendations for peacebuilding in Nepal based on the findings of the study included:
· Mainstream intra-personal peace into peacebuilding interventions, for example by teaching self-empathy and empathy for others through Nonviolent Communication (NVC) training for teachers, peacemakers, and psychosocial workers;
· Strengthen nonviolent action tendency, for example by increasing awareness of nonviolent means for social change in the traditions of Kingian and Ghandian nonviolence;
· Help to constructively channel the frustrations surrounding national civic life dissatisfaction in Nepal, for example by communicating grievances through media and advocacy campaigns in ways that bridge the gap between citizens and state and reduce polarization.
These and other findings and recommendations were published in a book entitled Predictors of Peace and Violence in Nepal: An Empirical Study of Peace Needs and Peace Services (June 2016) by Pro Public, which will inform Pro Public’s and ZFD/GIZ’s future program development. The publication was presented to the government of Nepal and the wider peacebuilding community in July 2016.