© UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

International Peacebuilding Frameworks

International cooperation for peace and development is undergoing a profound change. On the one hand, extreme poverty will be increasingly concentrated in fragile and conflict-affected regions. Conflict and violence are therefore often described as the “last mile” in ending extreme poverty. A “business as usual” approach is not an option here. Instead, new approaches are needed in order to increase the effectiveness of international cooperation in fragile and conflict-affected states, break down silos between peacebuilding and development, and embed conflict sensitivity. On the other hand, widening inequality, lack of participation and organised crime are jeopardising peaceful development and social cohesion in middle and high income countries as well. 

As a result of global power shifts and the growing engagement of new stakeholders in fragile and conflict-affected states, the influence of Western actors is diminishing, ultimately calling the legitimacy of external interventions as a whole into question. In this dynamic world, the West is losing its power to dictate the agenda, and this is accompanied by a loss of credibility.

In an interconnected world, the global challenges facing conflict prevention and management are becoming ever more pressing. The dynamics of armed conflict elsewhere in the world are influenced in part by our own consumption and production methods – and at the same time, armed conflicts have effects on sustainable development in other countries.

Over recent years, moves towards linking peace and development have gained powerful momentum at the international level. The World Development Report 2011 identifies trust between social groups, as well as legitimate institutions, as key objectives of conflict transformation, and emphasizes that engagement must be guided by the local community’s needs. The Peacebuilding and Statebuilding Goals (PSGs) defined in the New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States build on these approaches.

In the debate about the post-2015 agenda, too, which FriEnt has followed attentively in the last two years, it quickly became clear that only a comprehensive and universal approach can do justice to complex problems. The post-2015 agenda not only brings together the social, economic, environmental and political dimensions of sustainability, but will also trigger a further paradigm shift: the Millennium Development Goals were primarily intended for developing countries, whereas the new agenda will apply to every country and aspires to be universal. Peace thus becomes a shared global goal – and peacebuilding a global responsibility.


FriEnt offers its members information and advice on relevant European and multilateral developments. It integrates international processes into existing country-specific and thematic priorities, organises activities relating to topical issues, and promotes networking with international actors.