Study Launched at the UN High-Level Political Forum Highlights the Role of Local Faith-Based Actors in Peacebuilding Efforts

New research released during a side event to the United Nations High-Level Political Forum reinforces Sustainable Development Goal 16 and 17 as it examines the importance of forming partnerships with local-faith based actors as a method to achieve more peaceful and inclusive societies.

New research released during a side event to the United Nations High-Level Political Forum reinforces Sustainable Development Goal 16 and 17 as it examines the importance of forming partnerships with local-faith based actors as a method to achieve more peaceful and inclusive societies.

“Partnering with Local Faith Actors to Support Peaceful and Inclusive Societies,” was released on July 16, 2019, during a side event held in conjunction with the United Nations High-Level Political Forum.  This side event brought together key interreligious leaders and organizations to discuss the findings of the study and reiterate the important role religious and traditional actors have in achieving all of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), with a particular focus on SDG 16 –promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.

While it is well known and documented that faith-based actors have a positive role in preventing conflict and sustaining peace, challenges still exist in establishing partnerships between local faith actors and international actors.  This study further examines the role of religious and traditional actors through various stages of conflict as well as in fostering social cohesion and peace.  It seeks to provide evidence-based recommendations for guide engagements between international actors and local faith actors.  This study has a special focus on Lake Chad and South Asia regions.

Among many findings, it shows that both international and local faith actors have something to contribute and something to learn from one another; that effective partnerships require trust-building over time; and that partnerships that work across humanitarian-development-peacebuilding silos are especially promising for making a more lasting contribution to sustainable peace.

The research was led by International Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development (PaRD) and in collaboration with PaRD work stream members as well as the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities. As work stream member, the Network provided assistance in developing the report with a focus on Central African Republic.


The PaRD Sustaining Peace work-stream focuses on SDG16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. The work-stream is committed to collaborate to support action on SDG 16 at the grassroots level. This includes identifying a subset of countries where workstream members are already working in order to engage with local governments on national and international plans to advance SDG 16.

16 July 2019