McCormack Speaks

April 17, 2017
by McCormack Speaks
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Nigerian Military Attend McCormack Peacebuilding, Interfaith Dialogue Workshop

by the Center for Peace, Democracy, and Development

Nigerian Military conference attendeesIn late March, the McCormack Graduate School’s Center for Peace, Democracy, and Development (CPDD) hosted a two-day workshop on religion, peacebuilding, and conflict resolution for senior Nigerian military leaders.

The delegation included a major-general and two brigadier-generals who lead the Islam and Christian chaplaincies for the Nigerian army. They seek to develop the army’s ability to work with local populations, cooperate with religious institutions and community associations, and build local peace and security without the use of force.

In this highly interactive training, participants explored an array of methods through which religious conflicts can be mediated and resolved. The Nigerian delegation learned to understand the core of religious conflicts, to evaluate approaches to improve religious relations through several mediation theories and practices, and to facilitate interfaith dialogue, community outreach, and peace building strategies. Read more.

The Center for Peace, Democracy, and Development at the McCormack Graduate School promotes conflict resolution, democracy, economic development, education building, media development, and legal and judicial reform through partnerships and training programs across the globe.

November 23, 2016
by McCormack Speaks
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2016 Election Results Exposed a Fractured Media Landscape

by Michael Ahn
Department of Public Policy and Public Affairs

We went through this election season in our own bubbles–self-selected media networks reflective our political preference, social media sites with friends “like” us, and other various online sources of our choice–where we selectively chose facts, opinions, or conspiracy theories. We have become insulated in our selected networks of like-minded people with no links to “the other side.” There was a “fracture” in our information environment where we constantly reinforced our views and opinions with other like-minded people. Until the end, we thought the polls reflected the likely outcome of this year’s election.  We now know polls were off in predicting the likely winner of this year’s presidential election partly because they underrepresented likely Trump voters in their sampling and partly because the respondents were not truthful in expressing their preference, in particular, in expressing their support for Trump.

Read Ahn’s full blog posted by the Brookings Institution.

November 23, 2016
by McCormack Speaks
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Democracy is Not Demonization

by Saadia Ahmad
Graduate Student of Conflict Resolution

I am a Muslim-American and a peacebuilder. In the aftermath of a polarizing election season, the victory of President-elect Donald Trump, and an onslaught of violent hate crimes and proposed policies threatening human rights, I am struggling to simultaneously maintain my commitment to both roles and identities.

Read Ahmad’s full column in the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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