SOAS University of London

SOAS South Asia Institute

Two steps forward, one step back: Nepal’s peace process

Two steps forward, one step back: Nepal’s peace process
Deepak Thapa (Social Science Baha), Dr Alexander Ramsbotham (Conciliation Resources), Dr Mara Malagodi (City Law School, University of London), Elizabeth Drew (DFID)

Date: 3 April 2017Time: 5:30 PM

Finishes: 3 April 2017Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Paul Webley Wing (Senate House) Room: Scholars and Alumni Lecture Theatre

Type of Event: Panel Discussion

Opinion differs as to whether Nepal is ‘post-conflict’, or if the decade-long transition since the Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA) represents another phase of struggle, animated by the attempt to radically overhaul a system that has marginalised large sections of society. Given the episodic violence that has gripped parts of the country over the past 10 years, there is a strong argument in favour of the latter. But, that would also ignore how fundamentally the Nepali state has been transformed.' 

'Two steps forward, one step back: Nepal’s peace process' is the 26th issue of Conciliation Resources’ Accord series. It focuses on the progress of inclusion and the function of power in Nepal’s peace process, and how peace and political negotiations in various forms and forums have tried to support transition from negative to positive peace. 

With over 30 articles and interviews by Nepali and international experts, practitioners, activists and ex-combatants, the publication explores three core themes of the peace process, the political process and inclusion, with an additional analysis of the political repercussions of the 2015 earthquakes.  

The publication’s editors, Deepak Thapa and Alexander Ramsbotham, will present its findings, followed by a panel discussion and Q+A session. It can be accessed online at Conciliation Resources' website later in March, and hard copies will be available at the event.

The publication is an output of the Political Settlements Research Project which explores how international and national interventions can more effectively support inclusive political settlements in fragile and conflict-affected states. 

Deepak Thapa is the Director of Social Science Baha, a research organisation based in Kathmandu. He has written extensively on Nepal’s contemporary political developments and is also a columnist with The Kathmandu Post. In 2006, he was a Visiting Fellow at the Center for International Conflict Resolution, Columbia University, as The Asia Foundation’s inaugural William P. Fuller Fellow in Conflict Resolution. His book publications include Understanding the Maoist Movement of Nepal (2003) and co-author of A Kingdom under Siege: Nepal’s Maoist Insurgency, 1996-2004 (2005) and Gender and Social Exclusion in Nepal: Update (2013).

Dr Alexander Ramsbotham is Director of Accord at Conciliation Resources. He joined the organisation in August 2009, before which he was a research fellow in the international programme at the Institute for Public Policy Research. He worked as specialist adviser to the House of Lords European Union (EU) Select Committee in its inquiry into the EU Strategy for Africa, before which he was head of the Peace and Security Programme at the United Nations Association-UK. He has also been an associate fellow in the International Security Programme at Chatham House. Alexander completed a PhD in July 2011.

Dr Mara Malagodi
 is a Lecturer in Law at the City Law School, University of London. She is a comparative constitutional lawyer with a linguistically-informed specialism in South Asian law and politics (in particular Nepal, India, and Pakistan), human rights law, and legal history. Mara has previously taught at the London School of Economics and the School of Oriental and African Studies. She is the author of ‘Constitutional Nationalism and Legal Exclusion: Equality, Identity Politics, and Democracy in Nepal (1990-2007)’ (Delhi: Oxford University Press)

Elizabeth Drew is currently Conflict Advisor for Yemen with the UK Department for International Development (DFID). She has 10 years of peacebuilding experience. She previously worked with International Alert as Conflict Sensitivity Advisor for Myanmar, Head of International Institutions and Nepal Country Representative. Prior to this she spent two years working on conflict prevention and recovery with the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Nepal. Elizabeth also headed peacebuilding and governance programming in Sudan with the Sudanese Development Initiative (SUDIA). She also worked on peace process research and policy with Conciliation Resources and peacebuilding programming with DFID’s Conflict, Humanitarian and Security Department. She holds an MA in International Relations from the University of Cambridge.

Professor Michael Hutt

Organiser: SOAS South Asia Institute

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