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    What is Peace Leadership?

    Peace Leadership is a concept that recognizes that Peace is more than the absence of violent conflict (Galtung). Furthermore peace leadership is more than a focus on external peace.  Rather, peace leadership,from our perspective, focuses on both internal and external peace, as well as peace after conflict and peace before conflict or even peace without conflict.

    Peace Leadership is a relatively new concept such that a google search even a few years ago did not yield any results.  Within the last few years, the International Leadership Association (ILA) has convened a Peace Leadership Affinity Group, of which I am the co-convener, and has over 250 members. These members are all contributing to a definition of peace leadership as well as a scope of practice and research.

    The focus on peace leadership is both individual and communal such that we need to practice inner peace so that we can practice community or external peace from a place of personal peace.  The purpose of peace leadership is to work from a place of inner peace for the purpose of bringing about global peace by challenging existing violence and aggression and creating programs for both individuals and communities that focus on educational efforts for peace.  These educational efforts would include best practices from inner peace work, peace building work and effective leadership bodies of work.

    Components of Peace Leadership? 

    • Inner Peace Work
    • External Peace Work

    Building FOR peace but not building FROM peace, is a trap (Dinan, 2017).  Peace Leadership provides a framework to create Inner Peace as well as a framework for external peace based on the best practices of effective leadership (emotional intelligence) and peace and reconciliation efforts (tenets of Ubuntu).

    Inner Peace Work:

    • Body
    • Mind
    • Spirit

    External Peace Work:

    • Self Leadership
    • Leading Others
    • Leading Organizations/Communities

    Throughout both the Inner and External Peace Work, the tenets of Ubuntu are infused such that the ultimate goal is a peaceful society based on peaceful humans.

    Why Peace Leadership?

    For many years there has been recognition that inner peace was desirable and necessary.  And for many years, there has been recognition that positive leadership was both desirable and necessary.  These two bodies of work have to a large degree existed in a vacuum until the conceptualization of peace leadership as a body of work. Given the current state of society, it is imperative for the sake of humanity that these two disciplines come together to provide the necessary solutions for global peace as well as a guide for the step –by- step processes to achieve global peace.                    


    Video Interview

    When I was at the Peace Leadership Conference in India, February of 2016 I was interviewed by Philip Hellmich, Director of Peace for the Shift Network. We talked about many exciting concepts and developments in the rapidly expanding discipline of Peace Leadership. Many thanks to the Yoga Day Summit Video series for providing the impetus for this video. Click here to watch it!