Article Title

Peace Architecture


Luc Reychler


In the sixties the green and the peace movements alerted the international community of the deterioration of the environment and of the danger of nuclear conflicts. Since then, the green movement has been transformed into political parties, departments, jobs, environmental impact assessments and several international regimes. The first publication of the Club of Rome in 1972, Limits of Growth, had a catalyzing effect for raising life and death questions that confront mankind and claiming that planetary planning was the most important business on earth (Meadows 1972). The peace movement, on the other hand, evolved differently. There were some peak moments such as the peace marches in the eighties, but the impacts were weaker and less decisive. One explanation is that the peace movement had to cope with the strong bureaucracies of foreign offices and of defense departments that claimed the expertise. Another explanation is that a great deal of the peace movement does not define peace as a collective good. Being removed from the embedded conflict gives a false sense of apartness making some conflicts seem irrelevant to societies at peace. The possibility of cruise missiles hitting peaceful countries caused huge peace marches; the snipers in Sarajevo did not. A third reason is that costs of violence continue to be underestimated because of inadequate estimates of the price of failed conflict prevention (Reychler 1999a).

Author Bio(s)

Luc Reychler is Professor of International Relations and Peace Research at the University of Leuven, Belgium. He is also Convener of International Peace Research Association’s Commission on Conflict Resolution and Peace Building. Dr. Reychler has published many journal articles on field diplomacy, conflict prevention as well as a book entitled Peace Building: A Field Guide (2001).


1960s, green movement, Jean Monnet, leadership, nuclear conflicts, peace architecture, peace research, supra-nationalism, violent conflicts

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