What is Locally Led?

Locally driven peacebuilding is an approach in which the people involved in, and most affected by, violent conflict work together to create and enact their own solutions to prevent, reduce, and/or transform the conflict, with the support they desire from outsiders. This is an inside-out, bottom-up approach that involves mobilizing local capacities, knowledge, and resources. It is an approach to peacebuilding that aims to amplify local ownership of conflict transformation. This is sometimes referred to as locally led or locally owned peacebuilding.

By “local” we refer to those who must deal with the conflict on a day-to-day basis and live with its consequences. The scale of “local” is defined in relation to the specific conflict and context. For example, “local” can refer to those in country in relation to international agencies. In some situations, it can also refer to residents of a particular community or region experiencing conflict in contrast to a national civil society organization.

The role of outsiders to the immediate conflict (e.g., INGOs, aid workers, academics, funders, etc.) in this approach is to work in support of local groups and individuals to encourage, accompany, and assist their efforts. This can take a variety of forms including, but not limited to, providing spaces in which they can develop and enact their own peace building strategies, amplifying their solutions to decision-makers, offering technical and financial support, and connecting local expertise.

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