Complexity, Peace, and Sustainability

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Our Program

We believe that the complex challenges facing society today can be effectively addressed by integrating traditional techniques with more adaptive approaches made possible through complexity science and systems thinking. Research has shown that about one in every twenty conflicts – five percent – becomes stuck and seemingly unresolvable. We see an increasing need for novel approaches to solving problems that reflect the complexity of the world today – approaches that avoid the traps and unintended consequences plaguing well-intentioned “fixes” that ultimately fail. In support of this, we are working on multiple fronts to advance the science, practice and education of complexity science and systems thinking.

Our Complexity, Peace, and Sustainability program offers a paradigm shift in the study of peace and conflict dynamics. Currently, the majority of empirical research on conflict and peace from the interpersonal to the societal level has focused on identifying linear, cause and effect relationships between variables in a system. Our research takes a different approach and employs new models – based on complexity science, systems thinking, causal loop diagramming, and Dynamical Systems Theory (DST) – to engage and think anew about the complexity of peace, conflict and sustainability.

Our People 

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Naseem Aumeerally

Research Affiliate

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Tatiana Benavides

Research Affiliate

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Allegra Chen-Carrel

Program Manager

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Peter Coleman

Principle Investigator

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Josh Fisher

Core Faculty

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Doug Fry

Core Faculty, Anthropology

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Larry Liebovitch

Core Faculty, Astrophysics

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Geneviève Souillac

Core Faculty, Anthropology

              Partners and Affiliates

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