The vast majority of Mercy Corps’ programs are in fragile states and conflict-affected environments. In these settings, we have found that one of the most effective approaches is to integrate peacebuilding and economic development interventions. Our integrated economic development and peacebuilding programs go beyond conflict sensitivity to actively build peace through market development and economic activity.
These programs actively promote peace by building economic relationships, addressing economic causes of conflict, reducing economic incentives for violence, and supporting local private sector actors to build peace. In addition, we use peacebuilding tools to build trust, resolve economic disputes, and address market dysfunctions related to violence, power imbalances, weak relationships, and poor governance.
“Peacebuilding through Economic Development” outlines Mercy Corps’ approach to promoting peace through economic and market development, highlights key theories of change underlying these integrated programs, and provides illustrative programmatic examples.