• Towards Peaceful Adaptation? Reflections on the purpose, scope, and practice of peace studies in the 21st Century

      Kelly, Rhys H.S.; Kelly, Ute (2013-07)
      Our aim in this article is to articulate and consider a number of questions concerning the future purpose, scope, and practice of peace studies. Our premise, set out in the first section, is that the current era of growth and globalisation will necessarily give way to some degree of social and economic contraction, as the limits to growth implied by the interacting forces of ecological change and resource dependency are encountered. Against this background, we suggest that ‘peaceful adaptation’ could be an appropriate concept to guide consideration of and responses to future challenges associated with building more sustainable forms of society in a context of ‘less’. The remainder of the paper works through a series of questions regarding the meaning of ‘peaceful adaptation', and the potential roles of peace researchers and educators, taking into account the need for peace studies not only to study and contribute to adaptation processes, but to also to respond to the prospect that current systems for knowledge production, dissemination and maintenance may themselves be vulnerable. In each section, we point to examples of existing work that provide promising starting points for engagement, but also highlight some issues and questions that need further attention, especially from the more normative standpoint(s) of ‘peace’.