Peace Talks 16: Peace through prosperity


Peacebuilding is essential for the 1.5 billion people who live in countries affected by conflict. But economic development usually takes centre stage, in the eyes of governments, investors, voters, parents and young people wanting a better life.

The challenge is to make sure that economic improvement also brings peace. This is not automatic but plenty of experience shows it can be done.

We brought together the worlds of international business, development and peacebuilding in London on 14 July at the Royal Society as part of our Peace Talks series, to explore the challenges and ways forward. The event also saw the launch of International Alert’s new report, Peace through prosperity: Integrating peacebuilding into economic development. The panel included:

  • Juliet Wattebot O'Brien, Conflict Advisor, Private Sector Development, DFID
  • Lanre Akinola, Founding member and former editor of This is Africa at the Financial Times
  • Phil Vernon, Head of Programmes, International Alert. Author of Peace through prosperity.
  • Ramanie Kunanayagam, Group Head, Social Performance, BG Group
  • Dan Smith, Secretary General, International Alert (Chair)

International Alert recognises the positive role businesses can play in supporting peace, but also at times how their activities can exacerbate tensions and fuel violent conflict. With your help, we could ensure that more businesses integrate a conflict-sensitive approach in the way they operate, contributing to peace in places like Uganda, Nigeria and Colombia, to name but a few. Support us today here. You can find out more about how we work with companies here.