Report on International summer school

Gender and reconciliation in divided societies”

03-23 July 2017

Reggio di Calabria, Italy


Partners: Ivanovo center of Gender studies was the main organizer of the School; partners were University for foreigners “Dante Alighieri”, Reggio di Calabria and Peacebuilding UK, Great Britain.

Location: Reggio di Calabria, Italy was chosen due to the reason that Ivanovo center of Gender studies has constant partner here - University “Dante Alighieri”. In cooperation with the University another summer school - “Gender and religion in multicultural societies” - has already been successfully held in 2013.

Moreover, Italy itself can be considered as an example of divided society, which has already had an experience of overcoming of this division at different stages of its history. This idea was performed in a course of prof. Minuto “Cultural representations of national conciliation in post-war Italy in Italian cinema”.

Target group: psychologists, lawyers, members of the NGOs, university lecturers from different region of Russia and Ukraine.

Mission of the School:

to present the experience of reconciliation of opposing parties in a divided community of different countries and regions of Europe,

- to teach participants to use the gender analysis in elaboration approaches to conflict resolution and peace building,

- to give the participants skills of facilitation of intergroup conflict and mediation in the negotiation process

The program met its purposes and included the following courses:

Grassroots initiatives and women’s NGOs in peace building process – Almut Rochowanski, Adviser в Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Peacebuldig UK

Managing Intergroup Conflict through Facilitation – Prof. Ludmila Azarova, Moscow regional University

Gender and conflict transformation – Dr. Neira Gencic, University of Saraevo

Women, Religion and Peace – Prof. Ulrike Auga, Humboldt University, Berlin

National reconciliation in post-war Italy – prof. Paolo Minuto, University of Dante Alighieri

Divided societies and their reconciliation: gender aspects of memory reconciliation in post-Communist Eastern Europe – Prof. Nikolay Vukov Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Studies 

All courses received high rating from participants’ feedback questionnaires.

Organizational methods of the School: in the program of the School high emphasis was placed on discussions, watching and discussing videos, performance of practical tasks and work in small groups. At the beginning of the School participants were tasked to elaborate final group projects to demonstrate their knowledge and skills learned during the School.


All the participants elaborated their action plans for promoting peace building initiatives and tolerance and performed them during final round table “The role of grassroots initiatives in peace building process in divided societies”. According to results the participants were awarded certificates. In feedback questionnaires, almost all participants noted that gained knowledge and skills will be useful in their further work and development of their organizations. As an extra bonus, it was noted the establishment of new contacts and connections among participants and with the teachers and organizers of the School that would be useful for the development of civil society networks and coalitions.

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