ISOOKO (Kinyarwanda for ‘source’) explores the potential of digital technologies to support peace education. We focus on how digital tools can support and complement peace education activities in both Rwanda and Kenya.
In any society that has emerged from civil conflict there is a risk of recurrence unless the underlying divisions, ideologies and resentments are addressed. Peace education has been shown to promote the knowledge, skills and attitudes that will help people either to prevent the occurrence of conflict, resolve conflicts peacefully, or create social conditions conducive to peace.
Digital technologies offer new opportunities to provide access to information, facilitate active engagement with information, and create inclusive spaces for dialogue between communities. Simultaneously, digital technologies could support people in developing and practising knowledge, skills and attitudes central within peace education.
ISOOKO explores the potential of digital technologies to support peace education in two separate contexts: in Rwanda, in relation to the ongoing processes of peace education, reconciliation and reconstruction after its civil conflict and the 1994 genocide; and in Kenya, in relation to the intermittent post-election violence that has occurred since 2007, and subsequent reconciliation activities.
Within the ISOOKO project, we develop and test digital technologies in relation to peace education activities of different partner organisations. On the basis of participatory design methods, we aim to understand how digital technologies can support peace education activities, in the context of diverse scenarios in Rwanda and Kenya.
At the core of the project, we aim to investigate the potential roles of digital technologies in support of peace education. ISOOKO may be considered to comprise three different strands:
- ISOOKO as a Repository:
We will develop a repository to understand the potential impacts of currently available technologies. This allows us to gather lessons learned and identify best practices in the use of digital technologies in support of peace education and peace building practices.
- ISOOKO as a Platform:
In order to complement currently available digital technologies, the second strand of the project focuses on the development of a platform to peace education activities. The platform will be tested in the context of various scenarios in Rwanda and Kenya.
- ISOOKO as a Process:
The third strand of the project centres on the process and methodology used for the development and trial of digital technologies (and the platform, in particular) throughout the ISOOKO project.
ISOOKO constitutes a collaboration between various international partners. The project will be implemented from 2018 to 2020. ISOOKO has been funded under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and innovation programme.