In late 2019, the Oxford Programme on International Peace and Security, alongside partners from McGill University and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, began to consider how research and findings on the prevention of mass atrocities could be better channelled to policymakers in government. Over the following months, we engaged in a series of internal and external consultations regarding the possibility of developing a platform for sustained engagement between academics, expert practitioners, and policymakers aimed at expanding, supporting and sustaining the atrocity prevention agenda.
Our preliminary consultations revealed that within the transatlantic region, there is an immediate need for sustained and effective knowledge exchange on atrocity prevention. This need, and the absence of meaningful exchange, has been further heightened by the current pandemic, and the urgent challenges it presents for policymakers, academics, and civil society alike.
In our Briefing Paper, we propose the convening of a new transatlantic atrocity prevention platform aimed at fulfilling this need for greater interaction between academics, civil society, and policymakers, and creating new avenues for dialogue to reinvigorate the atrocity prevention agenda. The proposed platform is to be comprised of two prongs: on the one end, the convening of a Transatlantic Atrocity Prevention Research Council, and on the other end, the convening of an Inter-Governmental Network for Atrocity Prevention. Through regular discussion and structured convenings, the Research Council and Inter-Governmental Network will have an interactive relationship, focused on delivering evidence-based and impact-oriented research on atrocity prevention.
We welcome discussion, both from our colleagues within the academy and with expert practitioners and policymakers, on the findings and proposals set out in this paper, and on opportunities to further develop the platform and collaborate with others in the atrocity prevention space.
The Briefing Paper can be accessed here.