Training future negotiators and mediators
 
The 17th UNITAR-IPI Fellowship Programme in Peacemaking and Preventive Diplomacy concludes in Norway
 
Conflict prevention, as one of the major obligations under the Charter of the United Nations, requires Member States and the UN Secretariat to develop and nurture the necessary talent and knowledge in their diplomats and staff to keep up with international best practices and to equip them with the latest conflict resolution skills.   
 
During the two-week UNITAR-IPI Fellowship Programme in Peacemaking and Preventive Diplomacy, participants analysed violent conflicts and their resolution; studied and applied negotiation and mediation theories and techniques; benefitted from lessons and best practices drawn from case studies from Asia, the Middle East and Africa presented by world-renowned resource persons; and engaged in practical conflict analysis, negotiation and mediation exercises. A simulation, based on a current conflict was developed to give participants the opportunity to practice mediation and negotiation between parties using a real-world conflict situation.
 
UNITAR’s interest-based, problem-solving approach to negotiation and mediation encourages the exploration of all parties’ interests, so that innovative options can be developed to address parties’ concerns and aspirations. In contrast to power-based or rights-based approaches, interest-based negotiation tends to be less costly, enabling a more lasting, integrative win-win solution to the problem.
 
Since its inception in 1993, the Fellowship Programme has trained over 600 individuals directly involved in conflict resolution – including selected officers from UN departments and agencies, as well as middle and senior-level diplomats.
 
Thirty-eight participants were selected for the 2010 Programme in Holmenkollen, Norway from over 120 applications and nominations. They included diplomats from 20 countries and from six UN departments and agencies. The programme is funded by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Norway and Sweden.