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Monterey Institute professor Pushpa Iyer has announced the formal opening of the Centre for Conflict Studies (CCS), a nonprofit organization with the mission to promote deeper understanding of conflict and peace. CCS provides a forum for research projects, working papers and fellowships as well as a platform for networking between scholars and practitioners from the field of conflict studies.

Before coming to the United States, where she earned her Ph.D. at George Mason University, Professor Iyer did pioneering work in conflict resolution and community-based development in Gujarat state, India, working to build peaceful relationships and economic cooperation between the divided Hindu and Muslim communities there. She has consulted for a number of nongovernmental organizations and institutions, including the World Bank, in areas including India, Sri Lanka, and the Philippines.

More recently, professor Iyer’s work with Monterey Institute students specializing in conflict resolution has taken her to Cambodia and Sierra Leone, where she led and mentored students through efforts to understand and support peace-building efforts in both nations. “What makes this news so exciting,” says professor Iyer, “is the fact that many of the MIIS conflict students and alumni are so actively involved in the day-to-day running of the Centre.”

The first issue of the CCS’s quarterly magazine Reflections features articles about peace-making in Darfur, the challenges ahead for Southern Sudan, and the death of bin Laden.

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Jason Warburg

Eva Gudbergsdottir